CO ag commissioner promotes opening lamb markets
“We are asking you to advocate for the reopening of global markets for bison and lamb.” This was the message Colorado Commissioner of Agriculture John Salazar wrote to U.S. Trade Representative Ambassador Michael Froman.
Salazar reiterated the sheep industry’s urging to open markets that were closed to American lamb in 2003 when bovine spongiform encephalopathy was detected in the United States in an imported cow. Years later, these markets remain closed to lamb, even after beef trade has resumed.
It is estimated that access to Japan alone could generate $13 million in sales of lamb, which would be a 60 percent increase of total U.S. lamb exports. In Colorado, agricultural exports exceeded $2 billion in 2013.
“I urge you to make restoring market access for bison and lamb a top priority of future trade discussions and negotiations,” said Salazar.
–American Sheep Industry