In no uncertain terms, Nick Giordano says the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) is critical to U.S. pork producers’ profitability. Giordano, who is vice president and counsel, global government affairs, for the National Pork Producers Council, told Mike Adams in Agri-Talk this week that pork producers are “very concerned.”
“We’re hearing from our producers like never before,” he says. “The U.S. is continuing to threaten to use the six-month termination notice and you’re left wondering how long Mexico and Canada are going to stay at the table. At some point, the administration may follow through on its threat and we’re working overtime to make sure that doesn’t happen.”
Giordano says if NAFTA were dissolved, it would be an “absolute train wreck” for U.S. pork producers. Based on estimates by Iowa State University’s Dermot Hayes, it would mean a $12 hit per animal and approximately $1.5 billion in lost sales to the industry.
“It would be economic carnage,” Giordano says. Competitors would be able to ship to Mexico without a tariff, and even though U.S. producers are the most efficient in the world, that kind of disadvantage would be too great to overcome.
“Over the past 10 years, on average, we’ve been the largest pork exporting nation in the world, and it’s all due to trade,” he says. “The U.S. is being left on the sidelines…The U.S. is going backwards and our competitors are going forward – it’s a big, big problem.”
Listen to the full interview here.