WASHINGTON — The Biden administration announced on June 8 that it plans to nominate Doug McKalip to the position of chief agricultural negotiator for the United States Trade Representative. 

McKalip has worked in federal service for 29 years as an agriculture policy leader and trade expert. Most recently, he served as senior advisor to Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack.

“Doug McKalip is highly qualified and exceptionally capable of serving the American people as Chief Agricultural Negotiator,” Vilsack said. “Having served as a key agriculture policy official for nearly three decades, he has worked on every aspect of farming from soil conservation, and the supply chain to dealing with sensitive trade and national security matters.”

Katherine Tai, the US trade representative, also shared her support for McKalip, who would move to her department once confirmed. Tai shared how McKalip can help US trade in several ongoing matters. 

“Russia’s war against Ukraine has disrupted the global supply of commodities, which increases the risk of food insecurity for millions of people. If confirmed, Doug will join a leadership team sharply focused on addressing these issues,” Tai said. “I hope the United States Senate will swiftly consider Doug’s nomination and confirm him to this position.”

After the proposed nomination, the North American Meat Institute lauded the choice of McKalip for the position. 

“Doug McKalip has experience working with many facets of agriculture and is well suited to serve in this important post,” said Julie Anna Potts, president and chief executive officer of the North American Meat Institute. “This is a critical time to work toward greater access to global markets for US meat and poultry products. We urge the Senate to consider his nomination without delay.”

Other recent positions McKalip held included leadership roles at the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, Biotechnology Regulatory Services. McKalip was also a senior advisor for Agriculture and Rural Affairs at the White House Domestic Policy Council, where he worked with the Obama Adminstration on issues involving farm, ranch, and rural policy.