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AMI Applauds Donation Of Beef And Pork To The Russian Federation

Monday, November 9, 1998

American Meat Institute (AMI) President and CEO J. Patrick Boyle today applauded the Department of Agriculture’s inclusion of beef and pork in the final food aid package for the Russian Federation, saying it is the “right thing for America to do.”

Agriculture Secretary Dan Glickman announced last week that the U.S. would send at least 3.1 million tons of U.S. commodities to the beleaguered Russian Federation, including 120,000 tons of beef and 50,000 tons of pork. AMI had urged Secretary Glickman in two letters to include pork and beef in any aid package sent to Russia.

“The United States had to step forward to help the Russian Federation in its time of need,” Boyle said. “Including beef and pork in the aid package benefits both the Russian people and U.S. producers and processors.”

In 1997, Russia was the fifth largest market for U.S. red meat exports, receiving more than $200 million worth of fresh, frozen and prepared red meats. The financial downturn in this market, however, has created a back-up of products and contributed to downward pressure on U.S. livestock and meat prices. The extension of aid helps preserve a presence in the Russian market until the economy recovers and commercial transactions again become viable.

“The U.S. meat industry has been severely impacted by the economic troubles in the Far East and Russian Federation,” Boyle said. “It is imperative that we do not lose our access to these markets by abandoning them in their time of need. By providing humanitarian assistance to Russia, we have improved our long-term trade relationship with that market while at the same time helping the Russian people prepare for winter.”

AMI represents the interests of packers and processors of beef, pork, lamb, veal and turkey products and their suppliers throughout North America. Headquartered in Washington, DC, the Institute provides legislative, regulatory and public relations services, conducts scientific and economic research, offers marketing and technical assistance and sponsors education programs.

For more information contact:
Janet Riley
Vice President, Public Affairs
James Ratchford
Manager, Public Affairs

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