WHAT THEY ARE SAYING: Doug McKalip Confirmed as USTR Chief Agricultural Negotiator

December 23, 2022

WASHINGTON – Yesterday, the United States Senate confirmed Doug McKalip to serve as Chief Agricultural Negotiator in the Office of the United States Trade Representative.  This vote comes after the Senate Finance Committee unanimously approved of McKalip’s nomination by a vote of 27-0.
Elected officials, producers, and stakeholders applauded the Senate vote and expressed their enthusiasm for McKalip as he takes on this new role.
Read more about what they are saying:

Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack: “I am pleased the Senate has confirmed Doug McKalip as the @USTradeRep's Chief Agricultural Negotiator. Doug has been a crucial part of our [team] at @USDA. USTR is very lucky to have him!”
Senate Finance Committee Chairman Ron Wyden: "Doug McKalip has just the experience necessary to help America's farmers and ranchers meet the challenges of today as he serves as the top trade advocate for U.S. agriculture. He's ready for the big job ahead to address key issues like food affordability, lowering costs for farmers, and busting through trade barriers to support American ag exports. I'm looking forward to seeing what he accomplishes as the Chief Agricultural Negotiator."
Congressman Jimmy Panetta: “I’m pleased to see the Senate confirmation of Doug McKalip. Our farmers and ranchers need an Agricultural Negotiator at @USTradeRep to open markets and ensure our partners are abiding by their commitments and adhering to sound science.”
House of Representatives Agriculture Committee Republicans: “Pleased to see the Senate confirm Doug McKalip to serve as Chief Agricultural Negotiator.”
Congressman Adrian Smith: “I'm pleased the Senate has confirmed top agriculture negotiating positions at USDA and USTR. These are critical roles for our agriculture industry. I look forward to working with Doug McKalip and Alexis Taylor to identify and open new markets for American producers & consumers.”
American Farm Bureau Federation President Zippy Duvall: “The American Farm Bureau Federation is pleased that, after several months of delay, Doug McKalip was finally confirmed as chief agricultural negotiator for USTR. Doug has proven he is more than qualified for the position with more than three decades of agricultural experience…We look forward to working with him to create more opportunities for America’s farmers and ranchers to feed families around the globe.”
National Association of State Departments of Agriculture CEO Ted McKinney: “Throughout his three decades of leadership in critical roles in agriculture trade policy, including his current role as senior advisor to the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack, McKalip has represented American farmers, ranchers and agriculture around the world and has fiercely advocated for U.S. agricultural products and technology. We need knowledgeable and experienced leaders like McKalip to navigate the complex international trade and food security challenges our world is facing.”
The U.S. Grains Council: “We welcome and are very much looking forward to working with Doug McKalip in his pivotal role. Combining his extensive international experience and more than 28 years of government service at the USDA, his strong background in farm and trade policy and his knowledge of biotechnology will be very helpful to advance trade priorities and open markets for U.S. corn, sorghum, barley and co-products.”
National Pork Producers Council: “Congratulations to Doug McKalip on his Senate confirmation as USTR Chief Agricultural Trade Negotiator. More than $8.1 billion of pork products are exported to over 100 countries, supporting more than 100,000 U.S. jobs across the pork production chain. We look forward to working with McKalip and his team to further strengthen and expand markets across the globe for American pork producers.”
National Grain and Feed Association President and CEO Mike Seyfert: “Congratulations to Doug McKalip on his confirmation in this critically important trade position to the U.S. agricultural economy. He is exceptionally qualified to lead in this role, which NGFA members have been eager to see filled so that U.S. agriculture can be better represented and promoted in trade negotiations around the world.”
National Turkey Federation: “Congratulations to Doug McKalip on his Senate confirmation as @USTradeRep Chief Ag Negotiator. McKalip will bring critical trade experience to the job. The turkey industry is ready to work on current export challenges and opening new markets.”
National Milk Producers Federation President and CEO Jim Mulhern: “The role of the agriculture ambassador is critical to elevating U.S. agricultural priorities within USTR and with our trading partners. Today’s Senate confirmation of Doug ensures that American dairy farmers will be strongly represented at the negotiating table as the U.S. pursues full implementation of USMCA dairy terms and engages in trade discussions with Indo-Pacific partners and others. Doug understands the value that comprehensive trade agreements have brought to American farmers and ranchers, and we encourage him to be a vocal advocate for new agricultural market access opportunities.”
U.S. Dairy Export Council President and CEO Krysta Harden: “USDEC commends the U.S. Senate for taking an important step today in confirming Doug McKalip to serve as U.S. agriculture’s top trade official. Doug’s impressive career as a public servant working on a wide breadth of agricultural issues brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to this key role. We believe he will serve as an advocate for a forward-leaning trade policy agenda that brings tangible results to U.S. dairy producers, processors and workers throughout the dairy supply chain.”
Farmers for Free Trade Executive Director Brian Kuehl: “[Doug McKalip and Alexis Taylor’s] incredible wealth of experience fighting for pro-food and agriculture trade policy is desperately needed right now. It will be important that they draw on their years of expertise to help open opportunities in foreign markets and ensure we are not being outpaced by our global competitors. The food and ag community really came together in this effort. In doing so we reminded Congress and the Administration that supporting American exports can and should be a bipartisan priority."
U.S. Wheat Association President Vince Peterson: “Mr. McKalip’s work in conservation, with the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, and recent negotiations with the Mexican government on biotech issues match up perfectly with some of the most important agricultural trade barriers. He is well prepared for this position, and we look forward to working with him to open and grow overseas markets for U.S. wheat.”
National Association of Wheat Growers CEO Chandler Goule: “Congratulations to Doug McKalip for filling this critical role. I know Doug very well from his decades of public service at the USDA, and he will be an absolute asset to USTR, wheat growers and the ag community. With half the wheat grown in the United States destined for foreign markets, it is essential we have these key trade roles filled and we look forward to having Doug advocate for U.S. wheat farmers.”
National Cattlemen’s Beef Association Vice President of Government Affairs Ethan Lane: “NCBA extends our congratulations to Doug McKalip on his confirmation as Chief Agricultural Negotiator in the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative. NCBA is pleased that the Senate confirmed such a qualified nominee who can now get to work promoting new trade opportunities that benefit American cattle producers. We look forward to working closely with Mr. McKalip in his new role.”
USA Rice President and CEO Betsy Rice: “USA Rice congratulates Doug McKalip on his confirmation as USTR’s Chief Ag Negotiator. We cannot overstate how critical the agriculture branch at USTR is for our industry, and we’ll rely heavily on Ambassador McKalip to help level the playing field, particularly India’s egregious WTO violations, and ensuring that we take advantage of every opportunity to expand market access for U.S. rice.”
Edge Dairy Farmer Cooperative President Brody Stapel: “Having knowledgeable, skilled, and dedicated individuals like Mr. McKalip and Ms. Taylor leading the charge on U.S. agricultural trade will serve our dairy community and our country well. We thank the senators for recognizing the abilities of both individuals, and we congratulate Mr. McKalip and Ms. Taylor on their appointments and look forward to supporting them in their respective roles.”
American Feed Industry Association: “Congratulations to Doug McKalip on being confirmed as @USTradeRep Chief Ag Negotiator! We look forward to working with Mr. McKalip to leverage opportunities to tackle trade barriers and open new markets for the U.S. animal food industry.”