On May 9th, Chairman Mark Harless was among a group of farmers who met with Vice President Pence near Glyndon, MN. Mr. Pence was promoting the passage of USMCA trade agreement. Harless stressed the importance of the Mexican market for black beans and HFCS. He explained how HFCS has a very fragile supply/demand balance. “We can’t afford to lose any customers. We need to pass USMCS to keep those trade lanes open.” Steel and Aluminum tariffs that were a sticking point on Congressional approval were lifted on May 17th. Within days, however, threats to impose escalating tariffs on Mexico over border security were announced. Those tariffs appear to be set aside at least for now.
Harless also had the opportunity to participate in a June 6th biofuels discussion in Moorhead, MN organized by Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar. Harless thanked her for her efforts in making E-15 available for sale year-round and her continued efforts to resolve the small refiner ethanol waivers issued by the EPA that have reduced demand for ethanol by 2.6 billion gallons. “We are on the cusp of many new uses for corn due to technological breakthroughs like CRISPR-Cas9. We need to keep the regulatory environment friendly to these new developments,” Harless concluded.