WASHINGTON- The North American Meat Institute (NAMI) has released a statement regarding Mexico’s decree to impose tariffs on US steel and agricultural products, including unprocessed pork. The Mexican tariffs are in retaliation to tariffs on Mexican steel and aluminum exports to the US.

In 2017 Mexico was the largest volume market for US pork exports, setting a record-high total of 800,000 metric tons. US pork exports to Mexico were valued at $1.51 billion in 2017.

“These retaliatory tariffs will disproportionately affect hardworking American pork packers and producers, who will bear the main burden of these measures in the form of lost revenue and restricted market access, particularly as US pork production is slated to rise this year,” said Barry Carpenter, president and CEO of NAMI. “These punitive retaliatory duties are especially concerning now that key competitors are gaining additional access to the critical Mexican market, risking the US pork industry’s ability to compete on a level playing field.

“Today’s retaliation reaffirms that there are no winners in trade disputes. The Meat Institute urges Mexico and the US to work diligently to resolve any differences before additional tariffs and market access barriers take effect. Failure to do so will impose unnecessary hardships on American workers and consumers in both countries.”    

 The tariffs on pork products start at 10 percent and will increase to 20 percent on July 5.