Trump, Schumer Take On Canada’s Dairy Industry

By Food and Beverage

U.S. President Donald Trump looks on prior to signing financial services executive orders at the Treasury Department in Washington, U.S., April 21, 2017. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque - RTS13DAG

President Donald Trump issued another warning to Canada Tuesday, vowing that he will “not stand” for the way America’s northern neighbor treats U.S. dairy farmers.

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“Canada has made business for our dairy farmers in Wisconsin and other border states very difficult. We will not stand for this. Watch!,” Trump tweeted.


Hours later, New York Senator Chuck Schumer, who has fiercely opposed some of Trump’s policies, including the border wall, supported him on this fight.


“Been fighting for NY dairy farmers on this. Glad to see @POTUS join our fight to change Canada's unfair policy that undercuts our farmers,” Schumer tweeted.


These tweets come one day after the Trump administration said it would impose 20 percent tariffs on Canadian softwood lumber. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said Monday that “it has been a bad week for U.S.-Canada trade relations.”


“Last Monday, it became apparent that Canada intends to effectively cut off the last dairy products being exported from the United States. Today, in a different matter, the Department of Commerce determined a need to impose countervailing duties of roughly one billion dollars on Canadian softwood lumber exports to us. This is not our idea of a properly functioning free-trade agreement,” Ross said.

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Trade groups for U.S. dairy farmers have complained that Canada is incentivizing its processors to use local supplies – and in the process blocking American dairy exports.


“Canada, what they’ve done to our dairy farm workers, it’s a disgrace,” Trump said last week. “Farmers in Wisconsin and New York state are being put out of business.”


The industry has been calling on the government to step in.


“Our federal and state governments cannot abide by Canada’s disregard for its trade commitment to the United States, and its intentional decision to pursue policies that are choking off sales of American-made milk to the detriment of U.S. dairy farmers,” said Tom Vilsack, the former secretary of agriculture and current president and CEO of the US Dairy Export Council, in a statement earlier this month.