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NMPF Working on Model Dairy Export Certificate to Enhance Trade Predictability

September 7, 2016

A continual challenge for U.S. dairy exporters in recent years has been shifting sets of import requirements on dairy certificates that accompany U.S. products shipped around the world. Numerous countries require government assurances and documentation of the safety of the dairy foods they are importing. As these requirements have proliferated in recent years, though, some countries’ requirements have ground trade to a halt or needlessly put export access at risk through overly burdensome requirements.

To address this persistent concern, NMPF & USDEC are spearheading an effort to build support in the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) region for a model dairy certificate. The project is aimed at creating a viable go-to dairy documentation template for countries considering putting in place new certification requirements for dairy imports. NMPF believes that encouraging countries to agree on a model certificate could help to alleviate the risk of sudden shifts in import requirements in key U.S. export destinations.

Jaime Castaneda, NMPF SVP for Strategic Initiatives & Trade Policy (pictured at right), participated in recent APEC committee meetings last month to lay out the concept to APEC governments and begin to build support for it, as well as to help foster a wider discussion about the importance of trade-friendly measures. As part of that work, Castaneda moderated a panel on the importance stakeholder consultations in government rulemaking and participated as a speaker in a panel focused on finding trade-facilitating solutions to a variety of supply chain constraints.

Under the APEC procedures, the U.S. dairy industry will work closely with the United States and other governments to establish a technical group that would review the current Codex certificate guidance and other certificates, including the U.S. AMS certificate, to discuss options for establishing a more formal regional certificate. The project is anticipated to enter into a more technical stage of discussions early next year at meetings in Vietnam.