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NAMA Reacts to Commerce Department Tariff Ruling on Wheat Imports from Canada

August 29, 2003

CONTACT: James Bair, Vice President
202.484.2200, ext.107
jbair@namamillers.org

Washington, DC – August 29, 2003. The North American Millers’ Association (NAMA) reacted to today’s ruling by the Commerce Department to finalize tariffs it imposed earlier in the year on imports of Canadian hard red spring and durum wheat. The Department finalized the duties at 14.16 percent on hard red spring wheat and 13.55 percent on durum wheat.

“It is a simple fact that the U.S. growers do not grow enough of these types of wheat to satisfy both their U.S. and overseas customers,” said John Gillcrist, NAMA chairman. “That’s a surprise to many people, given the bountiful productivity of American agriculture, but it’s true.”

“NAMA members are U.S. companies that look first to supply their wheat needs from U.S. sources,” Gillcrist continued. “Unfortunately, Mother Nature is not always kind to growers, and the crop suffers both in reduced quantity and reduced quality. U.S. millers must have access to Canadian wheat to supplement the U.S. crop in order to meet the demands of bakers, pasta manufacturers and consumers of their products.”

The trade case next moves to its final stage with a September 4 hearing of the International Trade Commission (ITC). ITC must determine whether U.S. growers have been injured by the imports. A panel of NAMA representatives will testify at the hearing.

“NAMA will present a vigorous defense,” said Gillcrist. “Milling is a business with razor-thin margins, and being able to source good milling quality wheat is at the heart of that business. If tariffs effectively deny us access to that wheat, our competitiveness will unquestionably be hurt.”

NAMA has 46 member companies operating 170 wheat, corn, oat and rye mills in 38 states and 150 cities. Its membership represents about 95% of the total U.S. capacity.

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Read more:

Background information on NAMA
John Gillcrist
bio

Open Borders (301 Petition): Should the United States keep the border open for unrestricted trade with Canada in wheat and products? NAMA says yes.Supply and demand considerations, including quality problems in the U.S. crop, make access to the entire North American wheat crop absolutely essential for the milling industry to remain efficient and competitive.

NAMA Urges ITC to Deny Petition for Restricting Wheat Trade , news release, October 8, 2002

NAMA Opposes Efforts to Restrict Trade in Wheat Between the U.S. and Canada, news release September 17, 2002

The North American Millers’ Association Defends Free Trade with Canada, news release, April 23, 2002

The North American Millers’ Association Applauds Administration Decision on Wheat Trade -news release, February 15, 2002

United States to Pursue Action Against Monopolistic Canadian Wheat Board

NAMA’s comments in response to the request for public comment on the wheat trading practices of the Canadian Wheat Board – January 14, 2002

Image Library
Mill Closings
Pasta Plant Closings

International Trade Commission Report Supports Continued Free Trade in Wheat between the U.S. and Canada – NAMA news release, January 2, 2002

NAMA talking points on the report by the International Trade Commission

Summary of ITC Report On Conditions Of Competition Between U.S. And Canadian Wheat Industries – December 21, 2001

ITC Report Wheat Trade Practices

Testimony before the International Trade Commission – June 6, 2001.

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