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  • December 12, 2018

    EU Trade Pact Must Provide Dairy Market Access, Protect Use of Common Cheese Names

    After announcing its intent to enter talks with the European Union (EU) on a bilateral trade pact, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) is now developing negotiating objectives and seeking industry input. In comments filed this week with the USTR, IDFA said these objectives must address U.S. dairy’s widening import disadvantage, the EU’s high tariffs on American dairy products and the EU’s aggressive monopolization of the use of several cheese names.
  • December 12, 2018

    Revamped Bilateral with South Korea Maintains Market Access for US Dairy

    South Korea’s parliament last week passed the newly revamped U.S.-South Korea free trade agreement, known as KORUS. “The updated pact makes no changes to agriculture provisions and maintains U.S. dairy’s market access in South Korea,” said Beth Hughes, IDFA senior director of international affairs. The country represents the fifth-largest U.S. dairy export market.
  • December 12, 2018

    IDFA Invites Members to Participate in USDA Trade Missions Next Year

    The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) last week announced that it will lead seven trade missions next year with the goal of expanding exports of several U.S. agricultural products, including dairy. Planned USDA trade missions include cities in three of the top ten U.S. dairy export markets: Mexico, Canada, and Vietnam. The trade missions connect U.S. agriculture companies and participants with potential consumers and allow them to learn firsthand the intricacies of conducting business in their respective countries.
  • December 12, 2018

    Class Offered to Meet FDA Food Defense Rule Training Requirements

    IDFA is reminding dairy food safety professionals to meet training requirements under the Food Safety Modernization Act’s Intentional Adulteration rule. The rule, which is designed to protect against rare but potential attacks on the food supply, requires many U.S. food companies to conduct vulnerability assessments and create action plans to prevent intentional adulteration. It requires professionals overseeing these assessments to either have qualified experience or undergo FDA-recognized training. The Food Safety Preventive Controls Alliance now offers this FDA-approved course online. IDFA recommends that businesses with 500 or more employees, which must comply with the rule by July 26, 2019, consider having staff take the course.
  • December 12, 2018

    Apply for IDFA Summer Internship by Jan. 15

    IDFA is seeking applicants for its 2019 summer internship, which will offer one undergraduate or recent graduate a firsthand view of the association’s work with lawmakers on Capitol Hill and federal officials in regulatory agencies in support of policies benefiting the U.S. dairy industry. The internship, which is a paid position, will start in early summer 2019 and run for 10 to 12 weeks. The successful candidate will work with IDFA’s legislative and regulatory affairs teams on special projects, research and events, including IDFA’s Regulatory RoundUP, legislative fly-ins and the Annual Capitol Hill Ice Cream Party. Students with an interest in food and agriculture policy are encouraged to apply. All applications and supporting material must be submitted by Jan. 15, 2019.
  • December 12, 2018

    Dairy Delivers® for American Construction Workers

    IDFA continues to demonstrate that the dairy industry has a powerful economic impact – $628 billion in total – on the American economy. As part of this support, the dairy industry contributes to unique industries across the nation, like construction. The dairy industry directly supports more than 14,500 construction jobs throughout the country. Another 11,525 construction jobs depend on spending by dairy industry employees or those of their suppliers for new homes, maintenance on existing homes or other construction related activities. All told, the dairy industry creates more than $1.5 billion in wages and $4.7 billion in economic impact for the American construction industry.
  • December 12, 2018

    What Lies Ahead for Food Ingredients in 2019? Find Out at Sweetener Colloquium

    Tariff tradeoffs and the implementation of new trade agreements shifted markets abroad for U.S. dairy in 2018. But what happened to the ingredients important to dairy companies and sweetener users, such as chocolate and cocoa powder, corn, soybeans and wheat? At the International Sweetener Colloquium, held, Feb. 24-27 in Aventura, Fla., a panel of market experts and analysts will offer their insights. They’re set to paint the supply-and-demand picture for these key ingredients and outline possibilities for the future.
  • December 12, 2018

    Submit Ideas for Ice Cream Tech by Next Week

    At IDFA’s Ice Cream Technology Conference, participants and experts gather to share the best and brightest ideas for the ice cream and frozen dessert industry. IDFA is requesting topic ideas for presentations and panel discussions for the 2019 conference, April 16-17 in St. Petersburg, Fla. IDFA is seeking speakers and presentations on consumer, retail and product trends; food safety, quality and auditing systems; flavoring, sweeteners and novel ingredients; and sustainable processing, packaging and distribution solutions. Topic submissions are due to IDFA by next Thursday, Dec. 20.
  • December 06, 2018

    Capitol Hill Celebrates Dairy with IDFA

    IDFA kicked off the holiday season by hosting its second annual Celebration of Dairy reception, where administration officials, members of Congress and their staffs, embassy officials and industry stakeholders came to socialize while enjoying dairy treats. In all, around 300 attendees gathered to enjoy eggnog, a variety of cheeses and a sampling of holiday ice cream flavors donated by IDFA members.
  • December 06, 2018

    Dairy Leaders Tackle Tariffs and Trade Pacts on Capitol Hill

    During IDFA’s fly-in this week, dairy leaders from 10 member companies met with congressional leaders and administration officials to call for urgent action on U.S. tariffs that are impeding exports and other dairy trade priorities. While they urged Congress to pass the newly signed U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), they expressed concerns that its benefits won’t be realized as long as the tariffs on steel and aluminum imports, and resulting retaliations on U.S. dairy, remain in place. They also urged the administration to resolve tariff issues with China, address global protections on common food names, include dairy in upcoming trade talks with Japan and the European Union and pursue future bilateral pacts to increase dairy market access abroad.
  • December 05, 2018

    US, China Agree to Tariff Truce at G20 Summit

    During last week’s G20 summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina, President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping agreed to freeze tariffs temporarily at current levels without additional escalation for 90 days, beginning Dec. 1. President Trump agreed to pause U.S. plans to escalate tariffs on Jan. 1 and to allow a 90-day period for negotiations on an array of outstanding trade issues with China. The White House said Monday that China also agreed to begin purchasing U.S. agricultural products immediately. So far, the Chinese government has not specified the amount or type of agricultural products, but IDFA believes they most likely will be U.S. soybeans.
  • December 05, 2018

    Shipping Dairy to China? Take Steps Now to Remain Eligible

    Every two years, China requires American dairy exporters to obtain a third-party certification to verify compliance with Chinese laws and regulations and to update its information on the Food and Drug Administration’s list of eligible exporters to China. FDA is reminding dairy companies shipping products to China to take these steps by June 15, 2019, to remain eligible exporters. FDA also released updated guidance on these requirements last week that clarifies how to apply electronically and update list data. The guidance includes certification exemptions for some products.
  • December 05, 2018

    USDA to Publish Bioengineered Food Disclosure Standard Soon

    The White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) last week completed its review of the National Bioengineered Food Disclosure Standard, the last step required before the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) can publish the final rule. Because OMB completed its review on schedule, USDA could publish the final standard sometime during the next three weeks. When final, the standard will introduce mandatory labeling rules for bioengineered (BE) foods and foods with BE ingredients.
  • December 05, 2018

    Retailer Data Released in Recalls Should Not Confuse Consumers, IDFA tells FDA

    The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in September released draft guidance on food recalls, clarifying how and when it plans to issue information on retailers that may have received affected products. Specifically, FDA said it would focus on releasing retailer information for foods that aren’t easily identifiable, such as those without packages, during a recall. In comments submitted last week, IDFA agreed with FDA’s scope and stressed that packaged foods, which include the majority of dairy foods, should not be subject to this kind of disclosure. Sharing on-product information, not retailer information, is the most effective way to recall packaged products, IDFA said.
  • December 05, 2018

    Allan Attends Codex Nutrition Committee in Berlin

    John Allan, IDFA vice president of regulatory affairs and international standards, joined 420 delegates representing 73 different countries and 41 observer organizations last week in Berlin, Germany, for the 40th Session of the Codex Committee on Nutrition and Foods for Special Dietary Uses. Allan participated as a U.S. dairy industry representative in the International Dairy Federation delegation. The committee worked on several international food and nutrition standards and guidelines regarding follow-up formula, ready-to-use therapeutic food, front-of-pack labeling, “trans fat-free” claims, the term “probiotic” and a definition for “biofortification,” which adds nutrients to foods through genetic engineering.
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