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Americans For Farmers & Families’ Casey Guernsey: NAFTA & Free Trade A Win For Farmers

(Source: Senate Finance Committee)

CNBC’s JOE KERNEN: “So, what is your reaction to what we know so far about the Mexican side of things of NAFTA and what’s going on with Canada?  Positives for farmers?”

CASEY GUERNSEY: “Yeah, the timing couldn’t be better. I mean this is exactly what we need right now.  We need some certainty.  We need to be able to look toward the future with optimism because you know, the last few months especially has been a real rollercoaster.  You know, farmers have been dealing with low commodity prices, with this uncertainty.  And on top of that, all the weather that we have to deal with, whether it’s drought or really good weather, this timing couldn’t be better.”

KERNEN: “You’re not a soybeans; you’re beef, you’re a beef farmer, Casey.  And Mexico’s an important export market, your largest right?  What could have gone wrong if this had gone the other way?  What were you prepared for?  What could have happened?”

GUERNSEY: “Yeah, so my family’s in the beef business, and we sell beef both on the market and then also my father raises bulls to sell to other farmers for their herds.  And what happens whenever there’s uncertainty and whenever we lose markets, we’ve seen our customers selloff their breeding stock and actually my grandfather had to make a decision to sell a trailer load of his breeding stock and those decisions affect a farmer’s operation not just for the short-term, but also for years to come because you have to either makeup for that loss or you just have to sustain that loss, and you know when prices are so low, we can’t, that’s really scary and that’s whenever you see farmers get out of the business.  And we know some of our customers who are our farmers, who have gone out, some of them probably won’t get back in the business.  So, this is – when I say it’s timely, I mean it’s very timely that we’re able to get that certainty back in the market and we’re hopeful that – that the move forward will only build and allow this to sort of – be the standard – for negotiating trade deals with not just Canada, but other countries.” (CNBC, 8/30/18)

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