USTR on EU Tariffs and AskUSDA Launched
**America’s leading ag commodity groups, including the American Farm Bureau Federation, are asking the U.S. Trade Representative to “deepen trade discussions” in order to remove retaliatory tariffs by the European Union on U.S. food and ag exports.
On November 9th the EU imposed tariffs on American food and ag exports, the latest move related to disputes over aircraft subsidizing.
According to gfb.org, U.S. food and agriculture are once again dragged into a dispute they had nothing to do with.
**The USDA has imposed sanctions on five produce companies for failing to meet contractual obligations to the sellers of produce they purchased and failing to pay reparation awards issued under the Perishable Agricultural Commodities Act.
The companies include California-based AM Group, Texas-based Valvilla Produce, and three Florida companies, Suncrest Produce Solutions, Andean Fresh Fruit, and McFooddist.
The sanctions suspend their PACA licenses and bar them from engaging in PACA-licensed business without USDA approval.
**The USDA has launched the AskUSDA Contact Center program, that will serve as the “one front door” for phone, chat, and web inquires, transforming how the public interacts with USDA and providing an enhanced experience for the public.
Before the creation of AskUSDA, callers had to navigate dozens of phone numbers and had no chat function or online platform for self-service, creating frustrations and inefficiencies.
AskUSDA was created to make USDA more responsive.