28 March 2022
Cost of inaction estimated to be $150 million
Renee Cordes of MainBiz updates on the latest actions surrounding a longstanding dispute between the US and Mexico.
Federal lawmakers led by U.S. Sens. Angus King, I-Maine, and James Risch, R-Idaho, are calling on the Biden administration to resolve a trade dispute blocking potato exports to Mexico.
In a March 14 letter to U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, the senators and 28 other members of Congress urge the USDA to press its counterpart in Mexico to honor and expedite a trade deal that would resume U.S. fresh potato exports. Those exports would mean $150 million in annual revenue for farmers in Maine and other states.
The bipartisan group signing the letter also included U.S. Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, and U.S. Rep. Jared Golden, D-Maine.
The letter comes after the USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service agreed to new demands by the Mexican government that will significantly delay and limit exports to Mexico. However, the U.S. demand is supported by a Mexican Supreme Court ruling and successful site visits made by Mexican authorities to American potato facilities in Colorado.
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