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Audio: Secretary Perdue Will Be a Champion for Agricultural Trade

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On a vote 87 to 11, the U.S. Senate has confirmed former Georgia governor Sonny Perdue to serve as the new U.S. secretary of agriculture. In the attached audio report, U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF) President and CEO Philip Seng says Perdue has shown excellent knowledge of agricultural trade issues and an outstanding commitment to promoting U.S. agricultural products worldwide. He notes that Perdue’s confirmation is reassuring to those in the U.S. agricultural sector, as well as to key trading partners, at a time of significant uncertainty regarding agricultural trade.


TRANSCRIPT:

Joe Schuele: The U.S. Senate has confirmed former Georgia governor Sonny Purdue to serve as the new U.S. Secretary of Agriculture. In this U.S. Meat Export Federation report, USMEF President and CEO Philip Seng praises Perdue for his strong knowledge of agricultural trade issues and his commitment to aggressively promoting U.S. agricultural products worldwide.

Philip Seng: Agriculture has been one of the stellar industries where we’ve been in the black for the last 40 years, as far as agricultural trade. We want to continue in that tradition and I think Sonny Perdue has given us a lot of reason to believe that he is going to continue in that tradition extolling the virtues of trade and globalization. I really sense he understands what trade is all about, and what it means to the producer and so having him appointed and having him confirmed is huge as far as agriculture is concerned. We look forward to working with him and supporting him as he works to open up new markets around the world, but also dignify those market access issues with sound marketing programs.

Joe Schuele: Seng notes that at a time of significant uncertainty with regard to agricultural trade policy, Perdue’s appointment to lead the Department of Agriculture, and the strong bi-partisan support shown for his confirmation, is reassuring to those in the U.S. agricultural sector, as well as to key trading partners.

Philip Seng: From the USMEF standpoint, and the red meat sector, there’s been a huge air of uncertainty about what is going to be the trade policy, what’s going to happen in the Department with the envisioned budget cuts in the president’s budget, so I think the fact that we’re now going to have a champion, we’re going to have a leader, is going to be very, very good – not only form the standpoint defending the USDA budget, but also people overseas will now have someone they can appeal to, because the secretary does almost as much work internationally as he does domestically.

Joe Schuele: For more on this and other trade issues, please visit USDA.gov or USMEF.org. For the U.S. Meat Export Federation, I’m Joe Schuele.