For Immediate Release
Contact: Peggy Armstrong 
(202) 202-3508

(Washington, D.C. – April 16, 2015)  The International Dairy Foods Association applauded the introduction today of the “Bipartisan Congressional Trade Priorities and Accountability Act of 2015,” bipartisan legislation to modernize and renew Trade Promotion Authority (TPA). This legislation would help open the door to new markets for U.S. goods and services, boost U.S. economic growth and support well-paying U.S. jobs.

"U.S. dairy exports have risen from $1.4 billion in 2004 to $7.1 billion in 2014, and our nation now benefits from a dairy trade surplus of over $4 billion,” said Connie Tipton, president and CEO of IDFA. “Since every $1 billion in exports creates 5,600 jobs, according to the Department of Commerce, increasing access to new markets through trade agreements will have a positive impact on American workers."

The benefits of this legislation to consumers, companies and employees would be far-reaching, especially since the United States is actively pursuing three significant trade agreements: the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (T-TIP) and the Trade in Services Agreement (TISA).

  • TPP represents an opportunity to open new trade opportunities for Americans in the Asia Pacific region;
  • T-TIP is a comprehensive trade and investment agreement being negotiated between the United States and the European Union; and 
  • TISA negotiations aim to create state-of-the-art trade rules to promote fair and open trade across all service sectors.

TPA was last enacted in 2002 and expired in 2007.

The TPA legislation introduced today includes several key negotiating objectives, such as the reduction or elimination of tariffs, robust rules on sanitary and phytosanitary measures, and preventing the improper use of geographical indications, all of which make it easier and less costly for U.S. dairy companies to compete globally.

"TPA is key to making sure the U.S. dairy industry gets the best possible outcomes in trade agreements, and we strongly encourage Congress and the President to work together to enact it as soon as possible," Tipton said.

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The International Dairy Foods Association (IDFA), Washington, D.C., represents the nation's dairy manufacturing and marketing industries and their suppliers, with a membership of 550 companies within a $125-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 nearly 200 dairy processing members run nearly 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, ice cream and frozen desserts produced and marketed in the United States.