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Dairy Groups Support Coalition Facilitating Cuban Exports
USAgNet - 01/09/2015

The National Milk Producers Federation, U.S. Dairy Export Council and International Dairy Foods Association joined other food and agricultural organizations in support of additional changes in U.S. policy to facilitate U.S. dairy exports to Cuba and permit open travel for all Americans to that nation. The dairy organizations are members of the U.S. Agriculture Coalition for Cuba, a coalition of more than 30 trade associations and companies championing an end to the U.S. embargo against Cuba.

The dairy groups say one of the biggest impediments to trade is the lack of financing to allow for payment in a manner that it is commercially viable. They stressed the importance of policy changes that would remove costly and unnecessary burdens on U.S. agricultural exporters by allowing payment to pass from Cuba directly to U.S. banks in place of the current requirement that payments be routed through banks in other countries.

In addition to the embargo's financial provisions, the three organizations said lifting travel restrictions could help U.S. agricultural exports by allowing exporters to more easily conduct business with Cuba and spurring greater demand for U.S. agricultural products in Cuba.

Members of the U.S. Agriculture Coalition for Cuba are the American Farm Bureau Federation, American Soybean Association, Corn Refiners Association, Illinois Cuba Working Group, Illinois Soybean Growers, Illinois Farm Bureau, International Dairy Foods Association, National Association of State Departments of Agriculture, National Association of Wheat Growers, National Barley Growers Association, National Chicken Council, National Corn Growers Association, National Council of Farmer Cooperatives, National Farmers Union, National Grain and Feed Association, National Milk Producers Federation, National Oilseed Processors Association, National Sorghum Producers, National Turkey Federation, North American Export Grain Association, North American Meat Institute, Soyfoods Association of North America, United Soybean Export Council, U.S. Canola Association, U.S. Dairy Export Council, U.S. Dry Bean Council, U.S. Wheat Associates, USA Rice Federation, Smithfield Foods, Chicago Foods International, Cargill and CoBank.

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