FORT WORTH, Texas — Japan has announced that the tariff rate on imported frozen beef will rise significantly in response to an automatic trigger to protect their domestic production. The rate will increase from 38.5 percent to 50 percent from August 1, 2017 to March 31, 2018, and will impact all nations without a free trade agreement with Japan, including the United States. Richard Thorpe, president of the Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association (TSCRA), issued the following statement in response to the announcement:
“The increase in Japan’s tariff on frozen beef imports could have a significant impact on producers. Japan is the largest buyer of U.S. beef exports and the third largest destination for Texas beef. A 30 percent increase in the tariff rate will be detrimental to the U.S. cattle raisers, who rely on beef sales for their livelihoods, as well as the Japanese consumers who enjoy U.S. beef on their dinner tables. This is a prime example of why we need a free trade agreement, like the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP), with Japan, and I hope this situation can be resolved swiftly.”
TSCRA is a 140-year-old trade association and is the largest and oldest livestock organization based in Texas. TSCRA has more than 17,500 beef cattle operations, ranching families and businesses as members. These members represent approximately 55,000 individuals directly involved in ranching and beef production who manage 4 million head of cattle on 76 million acres of range and pasture land primarily in Texas and Oklahoma, but throughout the Southwest.