Montana beef trade negotiations in China

BILLINGS, Mont. — Senator Steve Daines is making a trip to China next week to represent Montana in trade negotiations.  Senator Daines says there is great potential for Montana Ag to break into the Chinese market.

“With 95% of the world’s consumer’s outside of the United States, when you think about the future of Montana agriculture, it is in these export markets, says Senator Daines, “China represents a tremendous opportunity for Montana agriculture.  It’s the world’s second largest beef market.  Our ability to get access to that market — which we are able to get access now thanks to what we did here a couple years ago — now we actually need to make it happen.  So I’ll be spending time with Chinese leaders next week bringing the voice of Montana agriculture and U.S. agriculture directly to some of the top leaders in China.”

The future of Montana beef could be largely impacted by Daine’s trip, so we asked Northern Ag Network’s Leif Bakken how exporting beef would affect ranchers in Montana.  Bakken says right now less than half a percent or less of Montana beef is sold in China.

“The ranchers could be looking forward to this as China is a huge market to be getting into but our access isn’t quite there yet so this meeting could help that out but the Presidents of both countries have to come together and figure out the trade stuff first before we really really start pushing the American beef going to China because it’s just such a small amount at this point.”

Daine’s says he supports President Trump’s efforts in making trade deals with China, but it is unclear how the President’s trade uncertainty will affect the U.S. and China’s negotiations with Montana beef.