USMCA Not With Out Challenges, Head of USGC Says

Photo: Wall Street Journal

The USMCA went into effect a little more than  year ago, and it was widely hailed as an improvement over NAFTA. But, Ryan LeGrand, President and CEO of the U.S. Grains Council, said USMCA hasn’t been without challenges.

“First of all, we’re certainly glad to have an agreement in place with our two top trading partners in Canada and Mexico, but yes, it’s not without its challenges. Mexico’s government has put decrees in place stating that they’re going to ban glyphosate, stating that they’re going to ban genetically modified corn for human food consumption, and that’s a real problem. That’s a real problem for us, and it’s a real problem for Mexico also.”

He said Mexico is making some bad decisions.

“When you consider that Mexico imports about 40 percent of its grain needs, and then you think about them cutting out glyphosate and cutting their own yields by 20 to 30 percent, that’s only going to increase their dependence on imported grains. And to be frank, they cannot find the amount that they need to import in non-GMO: they can’t find it. It’s not going to come from Brazil or Argentina: that’s GMO. It’s not going to come from halfway across the world from Ukraine; that just won’t be affordable if it is even non-GMO.”

LeGrand said that the U.S. and Mexican governments have to work together to get these issues solved. He added the U.S. Grains Council is trying to doing its part to help that resolution through educational efforts.

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