Japan is U.S. potato industry’s top export market
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the National Potato Council applauded the signing of an agreement on agricultural trade between the U.S. and Japan.
“Today’s agreement puts the U.S. potato industry back on a level playing field with foreign competitors in accessing our largest export market in terms of tariffs. Now we must turn to gaining Japanese market access approval for products such as fresh (table stock) potatoes and year-round access for chipping potatoes,” said Kam Quarles, CEO of the National Potato Council.
“We believe today’s signing locks in tariff benefits that were previously negotiated under the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement. The potato industry sincerely appreciates the dedicated work of Ambassador Lighthizer, Secretary Perdue and the agricultural professionals supporting them at USTR, the Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) and the Animal Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS),” said Jared Balcom, Chairman of NPC’s Trade Affairs Committee and a farmer from Pasco, Washington.
Japan is the U.S. potato industry’s largest export market with exports totaling over $350 million in the past year. Given a competitive tariff regime and reasonable market access agreements, it is believed that this market can grow by another $150 million annually (42%) in the very near future.
The National Potato Council represents the interests of U.S. potato growers on federal legislative, regulatory, environmental and trade issues. The value of U.S. potato production is over $3.7 billion annually and supports hundreds of thousands of jobs both directly and indirectly.