Imported Berries Ruled To
Cause No Harm To Domestic Growers
Jim Prevor’s Perishable Pundit, February 11, 2021
Here is an update on the Blueberry issue discussed below:
INCREASED IMPORTS OF FRESH, CHILLED, OR FROZEN BLUEBERRIES DO NOT SERIOUSLY INJURE U.S. INDUSTRY, USITC DETERMINES
The U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC) today determined that fresh, chilled, or frozen blueberries are not being imported into the United States in such increased quantities as to be a substantial cause of serious injury, or the threat of serious injury, to the domestic industry producing an article like or directly competitive with the imported article.
The determination was made in the context of an investigation initiated on September 29, 2020, under section 202 of the Trade Act of 1974 (19 U.S.C. § 2252) at the request of the U.S. Trade Representative. Information about this investigation and global safeguard investigations in general can be found here: https://usitc.gov/press_room/documents/
The Commission’s determination resulted from a 5-0 vote. Chair Jason E. Kearns, Vice Chair Randolph J. Stayin, and Commissioners David S. Johanson, Rhonda K. Schmidtlein, and Amy A. Karpel voted in the negative.
As a result of today’s vote, the investigation will end, and the Commission will not recommend a remedy to the President. The Commission will submit its report containing its injury determination and the basis for it to the President by March 29, 2021.
A public report concerning the investigation will be available after the Commission submits its report to the President.
This seems to resolve the issue for now...
…but it is inevitable that this demand for protection will repeat in many contexts, especially as taxes, labor and environmental demands on US growers will make it harder and harder for them to compete.
You can read the two sides of the blueberry debate presented below.
Our analysis here really extends beyond blueberries to the issues produce production will face in the years to come.