Indiana Dairy, Milk Prices and the U.S. Mexico Canada Agreement
HIDALGO, Mexico--Indiana's dairy industry needs the United States Mexico Agreement to be profitable after four years of sagging market prices, said Doug Leman, head of the Indiana Dairy Producers. Leman spoke by phone from a bus in Mexico, where he is part of a delegation from Indiana, led by Lt. Gov. Suzanne Crouch.
"Being here in Mexico currently is so interesting, as they've already ratified it and their attitude is great about it," said Leman. "For our dairy producers it's so important. We've been through four years of extremely low prices and then we've had to deal with trade issues and now weather issues."
While we would like to see movement on federal trade deals like #USMCA, we’re not waiting for Congress to act.
Indiana is open for business!
Today, we signed a letter of intent with the State of #Hidalgo!
— Indiana Dept of Ag (@ISDAgov) July 11, 2019
Leman said he sees the agreement as at least part of the solution.
"With Canada and Mexico being our number one trade partners and our neighbors, that's really where we need to be focusing. As I found out here in Mexico, there is a need for products. We'd love to be able to help out."
Leman said he would encourage Hoosier dairy farmers and anyone interested, to contact their representatives and encourage Congress to ratify the agreement, which would essentially replace NAFTA as a new trade agreement between the three countries.
"We do a pretty good job of exporting in the dairy industry already, but it needs to keep growing. We do a great job on the farm producing and we've got to be able to sell that milk and we've got to sell it at a profitable level and we've not been there," said Leman.
He said milk should be treated fairly on both sides of each border, without the weight of tariffs.
"Trade has to work fairly," he said.
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