Swiss Valley Member Hosts U.S. Trade Representative on His Farm

Swiss Valley Farms member Ray Schmitz of Valley View Dairy hosted a round-table discussion with U.S. Trade Ambassador Ronald Kirk and other local dairy cooperatives at his southwestern Wisconsin farm on Thursday. The event, which was coordinated by the National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF) and the U.S. Dairy Export Council (USDEC), was an example of the recent efforts made by America's dairy producers to expand market opportunities abroad.

Representing Swiss Valley at the round-table was co-op Chairperson Pam Bolin, area director Francis Leibfried and Swiss Valley YC'er Marty Burken, who is currently serving as Chairman of the National YC Advisory Council.

The discussion at the round-table centered around issues of critical concern to the U.S. dairy industry such as maintaining the flow of exports to important existing markets such as China and the European Union, as well as creating new opportunities for U.S. dairy companies through beneficial agreements like the U.S.-South Korea Free Trade Agreement. "I am pleased that we were able to have in-depth and frank discussions here with dairy industry folks about their trade priorities and concerns. There is no substitute for this kind of focused consultation," Ambassador Kirk said.

Read more about Ambassador Kirk's visit in the June 2010 issue of the Dairyman.