RCALF USA urges origin labels on beef so consumers can choose to respond to Canada’s retaliatory tariffs
July 2, 2018
BILLINGS, Mont. — On June 29, R-CALF USA CEO Bill Bullard issued the following statement regarding Canada's announcement that it will impose retaliatory tariffs on about $12.6 billion of U.S. exports, including tariffs on U.S. prepared beef products.
"Canada has enjoyed a huge trade surplus in the trade of cattle, beef, beef variety meats and processed beef with the U.S. in each of the past 24 years that NAFTA has been in effect. As a result, U.S. cattle producers have had to absorb a $31 billion cumulative deficit.
"This persistent trade deficit, averaging more than $1.3 billion per year, has weakened our U.S. cattle industry and has eliminated profits for current cattlemen as well as opportunities for prospective cattlemen to enter our industry.
"We urge President Trump to empower American citizens to send a message to Canada through their purchasing decisions.
"If President Trump will reinstate country-of-origin labeling (COOL) requirements for beef, American citizens can express their support or objection to Canada's efforts to reprimand America for daring to protect its critical steel and aluminum industries.
"R-CALF USA is convinced that if American consumers are afforded the right to choose to purchase beef produced exclusively in America or beef produced in whole or in part in Canada, the government of Canada will quickly retreat from its threatening posture.
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"In addition to our unwavering support for mandatory COOL, we have previously asked the Administration to impose tariffs on beef and cattle originating from countries that maintain a persistent trade surplus with the United States. Obviously, this would include Canada."