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IDFA Welcomes Mexico and Canada into Trans-Pacific Partnership Trade Talks

Jun 19, 2012

Peggy Armstrong, 202-220-3508,
Marti Pupillo, 202-220-3535,

Says Canada must reform its milk supply management system

(Washington, D.C. – June 19, 2012) The International Dairy Foods Association applauds the member countries of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) for inviting Mexico and Canada – the two largest U.S. dairy export destinations – to join in the current TPP talks. Both Canada and Mexico are partners with the United States in the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

“IDFA strongly supports Canada’s entry into the TPP because it will grant an opportunity to open trade in its restricted dairy sector, which has mostly been excluded under NAFTA,” said John Kelly, IDFA manager of international affairs. “By contrast Mexico has been an excellent trading partner to the U.S. dairy industry; it fully opened its dairy market to U.S. exports under NAFTA.”

IDFA remains adamant that Canada must reform its milk supply management system if the TPP is to maintain the goal of a high-standard and comprehensive agreement. “By its very nature, the Canadian milk supply management system effectively closes the country's dairy market to imports,” said Kelly.

Before Canada or Mexico will be allowed to fully participate in TPP discussions, the Obama administration must send a formal notification to Congress, informing them that the two countries have joined the TPP talks.

The TPP is currently being negotiated by Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Chile, Malaysia, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, the United States and Vietnam. Japan has also expressed interest in joining the talks.

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The International Dairy Foods Association (IDFA), headquartered in Washington, D.C., represents the nation's dairy manufacturing and marketing industries and their suppliers, with a membership of 550 companies representing a $110-billion a year industry. IDFA is composed of three constituent organizations: the Milk Industry Foundation (MIF), the National Cheese Institute (NCI) and the International Ice Cream Association (IICA). IDFA's 220 dairy processing members run more than 600 plant operations, and range from large multi-national organizations to single-plant companies. Together they represent more than 85 percent of the milk, cultured products, cheese and frozen desserts produced and marketed in the United States.

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