Lancaster, PA (November 9, 2023)— Doug McKalip, the Chief Agricultural Negotiator in the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR), visited an apple orchard today in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.
Ambassador McKalip toured Cherry Hill Orchards & Farm Market along with Jim Bair, President and CEO of USApple, and others in the apple industry, to discuss trade, jobs, and market conditions.
The U.S. apple industry is responsible for 150,000 jobs and more than $8 billion in wages, and when accounting for downstream effects, is responsible for more than $23 billion in economic output. Historically, the U.S. has exported one third of its apple crop, however exports are at their lowest level in ten years.
“The viability of small family-owned apple orchards and the apple industry’s ability to provide good jobs is linked to healthy export markets,” said Corey McCleaf, co-owner of Cherry Hill Orchards & Farm Market in Lancaster. “I was impressed and appreciative that Ambassador McKalip took the time to tour our orchard and learn about how important these markets are to the U.S. apple industry.”
“We greatly appreciate Ambassador McKalip’s leadership that reduced tariffs on U.S. apples and essentially re-opened what used to be the second biggest market for our apples – India,” said Ryan Hess, CEO of Hess Brother’s Fruit Company and a member of USApple’s Board of Directors who attended the tour. “It’s clear that ensuring the success of America’s farmers and producers has been a topline priority for USTR.”
USTR negotiates directly with foreign governments to create trade agreements, to resolve disputes, and to participate in global trade policy organizations. USTR is part of the Executive Office of the President.