U.S. govt announces official end to Mexican tomato dispute
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The United States Department of Commerce formally suspended its anti-dumping investigation against Mexican tomato importers Monday and entered into a new agreement on fresh or chilled tomatoes of Mexican origin.
Under U.S. law, the suspension agreement must prevent price undercutting and suppression, as well as eliminate at least 85% of dumping.
The Fresh Produce Association of the Americas (FPAA) congratulated Mexican industry representatives for their hard work and called the agreement a victory for U.S. jobs, companies and consumers.
“We stand fully behind the Mexican growers in implementing the new tomato suspension agreement,” FPPA president Lance Jungmeyer said.
“Their tireless efforts to maintain market access for Mexican tomatoes mean that consumers will still be able to find the quality and diversity of tomatoes that they have grown to prefer at the supermarket and in restaurants. The agreement will ensure continued stability in the tomato supply chain.”
The agreement has been in the making since the initial 1996 anti-dumping investigation which produced three previous agreements in 1996, 2002 and 2008.
The Department of Commerce anticipated broader coverage of Mexican tomato imports, enhanced in part by enforcement in Mexico to ensure that all Mexican growers and exporters sign the agreement.
A reporting mechanism will also be formed under the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Perishable Agricultural Commodities Act.
In part of the updated agreement, the department has established new winter and summer reference prices for four tomato categories. The agreement excludes tomatoes meant for processing.
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