Beef Buzz News
Ag Economist Bart Fischer Explains Why Beef Trade Must Be a Two-Way Street
Fri, 08 May 2020 10:03:55 CDT
A common theme being discussed among beef producers today is the need to restrict or eliminate meat imports from other countries. This idea is especially rampant on social media. During his appearance on a recent Oklahoma Farm Bureau webinar, Bart Fischer, Ag Economics professor and Co-Director of the Agricultural and Food Policy Center at Texas A & M University, said this is a bad idea.
Ron Hays Beef Buzzes With Bart Fischer
Fischer, who also has served as chief economist for the U.S. House Agriculture Committee, said the U.S. has worked hard to increased trade with other countries.
Part of his role as chief economist included advising the ag committee on trade issues.
“The reality on trade in beef is that over the last 10 years we have exported $15 billion more than we imported,” Fischer said.
We have spent years working on export promotion, Fischer said. The problem is if we start erecting barriers to imports in our country, it doesn’t take long before other countries do the same.
“It is really alarming to me,” Fischer said, “when I hear these things because we are effectively putting billions of dollars at risk.”
The former southwest Oklahoma farmer also put to bed another myth revolving around meat imports.
The issue of food safety is often used as an argument against importing meat, Fischer said.
“Anyone exporting meat to the United States has to meet equivalent safety standards, not by their standards but by American standards,” Fischer said.
“We don’t put products on shelves in this country that don’t meet food safety standards, he said. “It’s alarming to me when I hear people making arguments of food safety for meat products because if we start down that road it undermines confidence in all of our products that are subjected to the same standards.”
Click on the LISTEN BAR below to hear more comments from Bart Fischer regarding meat imports.
The Beef buzz is a regular feature heard on radio stations around the region on the Radio Oklahoma Network and is a regular audio feature found on this website as well. Click on the LISTEN BAR below for today’s show and check out our archives for older Beef Buzz shows covering the gamut of the beef cattle industry today.
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