Dec 19, 2019Colorado Congressman Tipton pushes for more potatoes to Mexico
Rep. Scott Tipton (R-CO) is among the people pushing for more potato access to Mexico for U.S. potato producers.
In an opinion editorial published by the Vail Daily, titled “Pass USMCA before Christmas,” Tipton said Mexico hasn’t lived up to its end of a 2003 avocados-for-potatoes agreement in which the U.S. would import more avocados in exchange for more potato exports to Mexico.
“Honoring this commitment potentially means a boost of nearly $100 million in exports for the Colorado potato industry,” Tipton wrote. “Over that time frame, Americans have been purchasing more avocados, yet the potato exports to Mexico have remained relatively the same in part to legal challenges in the Mexican court system.
“Considering that the average American consumes more avocados in a year than peaches, pears, prunes and nectarines combined, asking Mexico to increase market access for American potatoes seems like a reasonable ask.”
Tipton said he sent a letter to Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue earlier this year to voice his concerns.
“I am happy to announce that Secretary Perdue responded to my letter recently and shares my concerns on market access for American potato growers. Secretary Perdue acknowledged that Mexico’s Supreme Court intends to consolidate these challenges into one case which should expedite the time frame that this reciprocal deal could be achieved,” Tipton continued.
Perdue has stated that more U.S. potato access to Mexico is a priority to him, including during an August House Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee hearing.
Tipton represents Colorado’s third district, which includes the western half of the state and much of the south-central region, including the San Luis Valley. Read his full op-ed here.