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NMPF Builds Bridges, Defends U.S. Dairy Interests in Latin America

April 5, 2018

In support of NMPF’s commitment to build partnerships and strengthen U.S. relationships with overseas authorities and organizations, NMPF’s Jaime Castaneda traveled to Buenos Aires in March to present at the 3rd Outlook of the Dairy Industry in Argentina, and hold a series of meetings with Latin American government officials and those in the private sector.

At the conference, Castaneda addressed expectations for expanding trade at a time of uncertainty, as well as the various problems that dairy suppliers in the Western Hemisphere encounter with international organizations. In speaking to an audience of industry stakeholders, producers and government officials, Castaneda sought to enhance awareness of mutual challenges, and expressed the U.S. dairy industry’s commitment to being a responsible and fair trading partner.

Other topics of mutual interest discussed were: fighting the European Union’s (EU) efforts on geographical indications, confronting efforts by global institutions to discourage consumption of dairy, and challenging the EU’s goals of using international standard-setting bodies to impose EU standards around the world.

The accompanying government and industry meetings focused on ongoing EU-Mercosur trade negotiations, and the importance of resisting EU efforts in those talks to restrict the use of common food and beverage names, including for cheeses.

Castaneda also held discussions with FEPALE (Pan American Dairy Federation) officials regarding a potential partnership to enhance trade facilitation and support dairy’s image within international organizations. This dialogue builds on talks with the group last November that focused on driving greater cooperation and alignment on topics of mutual concern to FEPALE members and the U.S. dairy industry, such as proposed World Health Organization (WHO) policy guidelines threatening dairy consumption and trade, as well as the preservation of common food names.