Industry groups call for Japan to open for US exportsFive Washington-based food industry groups have issued a joint statement, urging US trade negotiators to continue to press Japan to open more of its agricultural markets to US exports. In Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) talks, Japanese trade negotiators made clear the country will not abolish tariffs in five agricultural sectors it considers “sacred.”

That prompted the US trade groups representing the five sectors—the National Association of Wheat Growers, the National Pork Producers Council, the International Dairy Foods Association, the USA Rice Federation and US Wheat Associates—to take a unified stand. The trade groups say the US should push Japan to provide meaningful agricultural market access or suspend TPP talks with that country.

“It is a big step, but one that will be justified, if Japan continues to refuse to open its agricultural sector to meaningful competition,” the groups said in their statement.