BUENOS AIRES, Argentina – US Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue commemorated the reintroduction of American pork products to the Argentine market on July 28 in Buenos Aires after more than 20 years. Perdue sliced a honey baked ham with US Ambassador to Argentina Edward Prado at his residence.

“The US is the world’s third-largest pork producer and a top exporter,” Secretary Perdue said in a statement. “This new market is a big victory for American farmers and ranchers. I am confident that once the people of Argentina get a taste of American pork products, they will only want more. This is a great day for our agriculture community and an example of how the Trump Administration is committed to supporting our producers by opening new markets for their products.”

The first agreement to open up pork trade relations happened in August 2017, when Vice President Mike Pence and Argentine President Mauricio Macri met in Buenos Aires. The White House also said that President Donald Trump brought up resuming pork shipments into the country during a meeting with Macri in Washington during April 2017. Argentina had banned US pork since 1992.

The US Dept. of Agriculture (USDA) and the Office of the US Trade Representative announced that the government of Argentina has finalized technical requirements that will allow imports of US pork to the South American country in April.

Argentina is a potential $10-million-per-year market for US pork producers with significant opportunities for future growth.

Back in April, the National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) were pleased with the development. NPPC urged the Office of the US Trade Representative to reinstate Argentina’s eligibility for the US Generalized System of Preferences which allows some foreign products into the US without tariffs, in return for Argentina reopening its market to US pork imports.

“Argentina has tremendous potential for US pork exports,” NPPC President Jim Heimerl said. “This is great news for America’s pork producers, who last year exported almost $6.5 billion of pork around the world.”

This pork declaration comes after Secretary Perdue announced $12 billion in programs to assist farmers financially impacted by the ongoing trade disputes across the world on July 25.

The Market Facilitation Program will make payments to farmers and producers of hogs, soybeans, sorghum, corn, wheat, cotton and dairy.