On June 18th, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack visited Ireland as part of a European trip. Secretary Vilsack met with An Taoiseach Enda Kenny (Prime Minister) and Irish Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney. They discussed the expansion of agricultural trade, the importance of agriculture’s role in the U.S.-European Union (EU) Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (T-TIP), and the benefits the trade agreement will have to both the American and Irish economies.
After the meeting at Government Buildings, Secretary Vilsack accompanied Minister Coveney on a tour of Irish beef and dairy farms in County Kildare, before heading to a reception at the U.S. Ambassador’s Residence where he met with stakeholders in the Irish agricultural industry.
“The EU is the world’s largest importer of food and agricultural products,” said Vilsack. “But despite the continued growth of this market, U.S. market share is shrinking because U.S. producers and exporters continue to face numerous trade barriers. The negotiation of the T-TIP offers a major opportunity to address these barriers and expand market access for U.S. farmers and ranchers.”