U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand signed onto a bipartisan push this week to have President Donald Trump's administration implement key provisions of the USMCA trade agreement for dairy farmers.
The dairy industry has suffered setbacks amid the COVID-19 pandemic, but the trade deal, a successor to NAFTA, has been largely seen as a win for farmers.
Gillibrand, as well as Democratic and Republican lawmakers, are pushing for the measures within the trade agreement for American dairy exports in Mexico and Canada to be put in place.
She signed onto a letter backed by 20 lawmkers in Congress to U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue and Robert Lighthizer, the U.S. trade representative. The letter was released Friday by Gillibrand's office and sent earlier this week.
Issues within the agreement that need to be implemented include regulations for cheese exports as well as dairy pricing in Canada.
“Dairy is New York’s primary agricultural product, but poor implementation of USMCA provisions on dairy could continue to harm the industry,” she said.
”I am calling on Secretary Perdue and USTR Ambassador Lighthizer to hold our trading partners accountable and ensure equitable practices for America’s dairy farmers. I will always fight for New York’s dairy industry in the Senate, and I’ll do everything in my power to make sure our dairy farmers have access to fair trade opportunities.”