Saturday, 08 November 2014 00:00

Global Meat Corporations Push for Sweetheart Trade Deal

Written by  Deirdre Fulton | Common Dreams
If giant meat corporations get their way on TPP, Confined Animal Feeding Operations, which have been linked to public health, environmental, and animal welfare problems, will almost certainly proliferate. If giant meat corporations get their way on TPP, Confined Animal Feeding Operations, which have been linked to public health, environmental, and animal welfare problems, will almost certainly proliferate. (Photo: Farm Sanctuary/flickr/cc)

TPP countries are already important export markets for the U.S. meat industry, but the industry believes that a new trade agreement would put those exports into overdrive,' report says

The global meat industry views the Trans-Pacific Partnership as an opportunity to "undermine local, democratic control of agriculture systems" and increase factory-farmed meat exports around the world, charges a new report from the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy.

The report, Big Meat Swallows the Trans-Pacific Partnership (pdf), was released Friday in advance of next week's Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Beijing, at which world leaders are slated to discuss the international trade deal.

It examines attempts by big beef, pork, and poultry corporations like Cargill, Tyson, and JBS USA—who have long been influential in trade talks and who have profited from so-called free trade pacts in the past—to reduce tariffs, lower food safety standards, and weaken regulatory barriers in order to expand their export markets.

"As growth in U.S. meat consumption has flattened or declined, much of the recent expansion in Confined Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs) in the U.S. is geared toward growing export markets," report author Ben Lilliston explains. "When combined with the voluminous feed demands for CAFOs (see this year’s record U.S. corn and soybean crop), more and more agricultural land is being used to feed industrialized meat production—making it more difficult for independent producers targeting local markets to compete. The global meat industry has already used trade rules to attack very basic consumer rights like country of origin labeling of food. These corporations view TPP as an important opportunity to further undermine local, democratic control of agricultural systems, and expand their reach globally."

For example, meat giants are targeting Japan—already one of their biggest markets, but also one with a variety of tariffs and safeguards on chicken, pork and beef to protect their own farmers and food system from a flood of imports. The National Pork Producers Council has called several times for Japan to be excluded from the TPP unless it drops its meat tariffs.

"TPP countries are already important export markets for the U.S. meat industry, but the industry believes that a new trade agreement would put those exports into overdrive," Lilliston writes. "In 2013, the U.S. exported more than $58 billion in food and agricultural exports to TPP countries, accounting for 72 percent of total U.S. agricultural exports, according to the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR). The USTR argues that number would increase dramatically with the elimination of tariffs under TPP. Not mentioned by the industry or USTR is that tariffs are often an important tool to help countries protect their own farmers and retain control of their own food system—considered important for both food and national security."

The TPP has already come under fire for threatening food sovereignty and small-scale agriculture in other ways, just as food and farming advocates say NAFTA has done.

Link to original article from Common Dreams

Read 5107 times Last modified on Saturday, 08 November 2014 20:42

Latest Economic and Social Justice News

  • The Racist Roots of the GOP’s Favorite New Immigration Plan

    Birthright citizenship is enshrined in the 14th Amendment, but Donald Trump and other candidates are keeping alive the idea that some Americans should not have equal rights at birth.

    Read More
  • Our Perceptions About the “Unworthy Poor” Haven’t Changed

    I first learned about the history of the “unworthy poor” when I pursued my Master of Social Work degree. I read about the social movements in the early 20th century and how they tended to divide people in need into people whose poverty was outside of their control – for example, widows

    Read More
  • Passing the Torch: From Julian Bond to Black Lives Matter

    Civil-rights pioneer Julian Bond died this week at the age of 75. In 1960, as a student at the historically black Morehouse College in Atlanta, Bond led nonviolent protests against racially segregated facilities like restaurants, movie theaters and parks. He co-founded SNCC, the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, and spent years

    Read More
  • The War on Women in Israel

    Sexist laws and institutions threaten all women in Israel, but Arab women are beset from all sides. In 2009, a couple from the village of Taybeh in central Israel were in the midst of a bitter separation. Their marriage had already dissolved in acrimony, with various legal battles under way,

    Read More
  • Where are Chicago's poor white neighborhoods?

    Poverty touches all races in Chicago, but it's more visible among blacks and Latinos. Here's why that happens and why it matters.

    Read More
  • Why erratic schedules are one of the worst parts of low-wage work

    Life in a low-wage job — at a restaurant or retail store, for example — has never been easy. You spend hours on your feet and deal with angry customers. And for parents, finding affordable child care can be a struggle. A recent management trend has made the lives of low-wage workers

    Read More
  • On 80th Anniversary, Progressives Call for Expansion of Social Security

    WASHINGTON—Congressional Progressive Caucus (CPC) Co-Chairs Reps. Raúl M. Grijalva (D-AZ) and Keith Ellison (D-MN) released the following statement celebrating the 80th anniversary of Social Security. “For 80 years, the promise of Social Security has delivered a secure retirement and vital disability support to countless Americans. This is an investment that we all

    Read More
  • How Childcare Actually Causes Poverty in America

    If the people who prepare your lunch deserve a living wage, the people preparing our toddlers for school do too. Is the most precious thing in your life worth more than a poverty wage? Activists are pushing for a $15 hourly base wage for preschool teachers and childcare workers. Many

    Read More
  • For Many Americans, the Great Recession Never Ended. Is the Fed About to Make It Worse?

    Why it’s a mistake for the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates this year. When the Federal Reserve considers raising interest rates on July 28—and then again every six weeks after—MyAsia Reid, of Philadelphia, will be paying close attention. Despite holding a bachelor’s degree in computer science, completing a series

    Read More
  • Student 'Aid' Industry Parade Crashed by Debtors Demanding Free Higher Ed

    "A loan is not aid," declared student debt striker Michael Adorno-Miranda   When thousands of student "aid" administrators, who were gathered in New Orleans for an industry conference, threw themselves a parade on Monday, they were confronted with something they likely were not expecting: a counter-spectacle of anti-debt campaigners demanding

    Read More
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
  • 8
  • 9
  • 10
  • 11
  • 12

Featured News

  • Congress Is Sick of the Secrecy Around the TPP +

    And Senator Sherrod Brown is blocking a key Obama nominee to show it. The Trans-Pacific Partnership is in its final Read More
  • The Racist Roots of the GOP’s Favorite New Immigration Plan +

    Birthright citizenship is enshrined in the 14th Amendment, but Donald Trump and other candidates are keeping alive the idea that Read More
  • Workers Are Losing Manufacturing Jobs Because of Policy, Not NYT’s Mysterious “Tectonic Forces +

    Wall Street executive Steve Rattner had a column in the New York Times in which he derided Donald Trump’s economics by minimizing the impact of trade Read More
  • Our Perceptions About the “Unworthy Poor” Haven’t Changed +

    I first learned about the history of the “unworthy poor” when I pursued my Master of Social Work degree. I Read More
  • Passing the Torch: From Julian Bond to Black Lives Matter +

    Civil-rights pioneer Julian Bond died this week at the age of 75. In 1960, as a student at the historically Read More
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
  • 8
  • 9
  • 10
  • 11
  • 12
  • 13
  • 14
  • 15
  • 16
  • 17
  • 18
  • 19
  • 20
  • 21
  • 22
  • 23
  • 24
  • 25
  • 26
  • 27
  • 28
  • 29
  • 30
  • 31
  • 32
  • 33
  • 34
  • 35
  • 36
  • 37
  • 38
  • 39
  • 40
  • 41
  • 42
  • 43
  • 44
  • 45
  • 46
  • 47
  • 48
  • 49
  • 50
  • 51
  • 52
  • 53
  • 54
  • 55

ESJ Calls

Featured Economic and Social Justice News

  • The Racist Roots of the GOP’s Favorite New Immigration Plan +

    Birthright citizenship is enshrined in the 14th Amendment, but Donald Trump and other candidates are keeping alive the idea that Read More
  • Our Perceptions About the “Unworthy Poor” Haven’t Changed +

    I first learned about the history of the “unworthy poor” when I pursued my Master of Social Work degree. I Read More
  • Passing the Torch: From Julian Bond to Black Lives Matter +

    Civil-rights pioneer Julian Bond died this week at the age of 75. In 1960, as a student at the historically Read More
  • The War on Women in Israel +

    Sexist laws and institutions threaten all women in Israel, but Arab women are beset from all sides. In 2009, a Read More
  • Where are Chicago's poor white neighborhoods? +

    Poverty touches all races in Chicago, but it's more visible among blacks and Latinos. Here's why that happens and why Read More
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
  • 8
  • 9
  • 10
  • 11
  • 12
  • 13

Does Your Legislator Support the ERA

 

ERAMap