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Mexico Targets US Cheese in Trade Dispute

Jun 07, 2018

Mexico announced on Tuesday that it will impose tariffs of 15 to 25 percent on U.S. cheese exports, in addition to other agriculture and steel products sent to the country. Mexico imposed the tariffs in response to the Trump Administration’s announcement that it will end the Section 232 steel and aluminum tariff exemptions for the European Union, Mexico and Canada. 

Under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), all U.S. dairy products enjoyed duty-free access into the Mexican market. Mexico is a top market for U.S. cheeses accounting for $391 million in sales in 2017.

As of June 5, U.S. fresh cheese, such as mozzarella, now faces a 15 percent duty until July 5 when the duty is raised to 25 percent. Grated cheese from the United States now faces a 10 percent duty until July 5 when the duty is raised to 20 percent. A 10 percent duty was placed on Grana or Parmigiano-Reggiano, gouda, havarti and fontina cheese until July 5 when the duty is raised to 20 percent. Other cheeses now face a 15 percent duty until July 5 when the duty is raised to 25 percent.

IDFA will continue to monitor these developments to assess the impacts on the U.S. dairy industry.

For more information, contact Beth Hughes, IDFA director of international affairs at bhughes@idfa.org.

 
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