The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement is an Asia-Pacific regional trade agreement that has the potential to remove many sanitary barriers to trade and eliminate import duties in the participating countries.
The United States expressed its intention to become a part of the TPP trade agreement negotiations in late 2009. This agreement would create jobs for Americans as well as help the economy by increasing exports to countries that represent over 40 percent of global trading. The 12 countries that are currently participating in the TPP negotiations include: the United States, Canada, Australia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, Japan, Chile, Malaysia, Vietnam, and Brunei.
In 2012, US pork exports to these countries reached almost $4.3 billion. Successful completion of the TPP trade agreement would allow for significant growth of US pork exports to these trading partners.
The National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) is urging for the removal of tariffs on pork and sanitation barriers to trade and that the TPP counties will accept US plant inspection system standards. President Randy Spronk has said, “The TPP represents the single most important trade negotiation ever for the US pork industry and for most of US Agriculture.”
Negotiations continue on the TPP Agreement. It is important that pork producers continue to voice their support to state and national organizations as well as elected officials for this and other agreements that would ease the opportunities for marketing pork. We are all a part of the world-wide food system.
(Max Knowles is the Agriculture Extension agent - Swine for the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service in Sampson County.)