Sonny Perdue sworn in as Secretary of Agriculture; AWC applauds

Sonny Perdue sworn in as Secretary of Agriculture; AWC applauds

With respect to the meeting that coincided with the signing of the Executive Order, Torrey reported that the roundtable discussion with President Trump, Secretary Perdue and farmers from across the country was productive and covered a significant number of topics important to the fresh fruit and vegetable industry.

"It is in the national interest to promote American agriculture while protecting and supporting the rural communities where food, forestry, fiber, and renewable fuels are grown", the text of the Executive Order reads. For instance, US fruit and vegetable growers aren't benefiting from NAFTA relative to their counterparts in Mexico, he says.

Perdue, who is three days into his role as a Cabinet secretary, touched on a variety of agricultural issues during his visit to the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Kansas City offices.

He will then move onto C.S. Monroe Technology Center and connect with six Future Farmers of America chapters via YouTube Live.

"I can't tell you what the administration is going to be pushing in the next farm bill", said Northey, a third-term GOP secretary of agriculture.

"I think the President showed his leadership this week", Perdue said.

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He also vowed to work with the administration "to establish a strong trade policy that benefits agriculture" and to identify unintended consequences of regulations and address them "before they create challenges for agriculture".

"As some of these issues would come up, he would turn and look at Secretary Perdue and say, 'Can you give me some background on that?'" Northey reported. This week, President Donald Trump backed off reported intentions to withdraw from the North American Free Trade Agreement, choosing instead to renegotiate with Canada and Mexico.

Furthermore, Mexico, which has bristled at Trump's harsh talk on trade and his call for scrapping or renegotiating NAFTA, has threatened to stop importing billions of dollars' worth of USA corn. "We hope that ends today, and we congratulate Secretary Perdue on his confirmation".

"People don't realize Canada has been very rough on the United States. It was also good to hear him say that there needs to be a year-round solution to agriculture's labor needs and to hear him talk about the need for a skilled ag worker program".

After Perdue, remaining nominees for Trump's Cabinet to be confirmed are Robert Lighthizer for USA trade representative and Alexander Acosta for labor secretary. "My job as USDA Secretary of Agriculture is to go around the world and make sure we're able to market and sell the products we grow very well", Perdue explains.

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