U.S. Agriculture Disappointed in EU Trade Talks Without Ag

U.S. agriculture is disappointed in the European Union’s failure to include agriculture in trade talks with the United States.

“Agriculture will certainly not be part of these negotiations,” European Union Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom said earlier this week while announcing the EU is ready to begin trade talks with the United States.

Pushback from U.S. agriculture includes ag state senators such as Chuck Grassley of Iowa, who said any deal that excludes agriculture will be unlikely to win approval in Congress.

The American Soybean Association called the EU announcement a letdown. Soybeans exported to the EU in 2017 were valued at $1.6 billion. ASA President Davie Stephens says U.S. farmers had “high hopes” the negotiations could address longstanding concerns regarding EU policies on agricultural biotechnology and pesticide laws. ASA is urging the Trump Administration to stand up to the EU and insist that agriculture issues be addressed in trade discussions.