Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack on Monday highlighted recent progress on a number of trade issues with Mexico following a panel discussion with Mexico's Secretary of Agriculture Enrique Martínez y Martínez at the Global Forum on Agro Food Expectations in Mexico City.
Vilsack's remarks come as Mexico recently announced it would expand American beef imports, potentially increasing U.S. beef and beef product exports by $50 million.
Mexico has also expanded its import ruling to allow increased potato imports from the U.S.
At the forum, Vilsack joined Martínez and Canada's Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, Gerry Ritz, for a panel discussion entitled, "Integration of Agro-Industrial Markets in North America: Challenges and Opportunities."
The panelists discussed how the United States, Mexico and Canada can continue to work together to create jobs and economic opportunity for the agricultural industry.
"Mexico is an important strategic ally and a critical economic partner to the United States. In recent months, we have made progress on a number of issues that will help increase economic opportunity for both of our countries," Vilsack shared in a USDA statement.
"The United States and Mexico will continue to build on our strong trade relationships and promote greater market access for our agricultural products."
In 2014, exports of farm and food products are forecast to reach $142.6 billion worldwide. USDA says funding additions in the farm bill, including the Market Access Program and the Foreign Market Development program, will help expand exports by creating and maintaining long-term markets for U.S. agricultural products.