Perdue: Current Farm Visa Program "Unworkable"

July 28, 2017 12:38 PM
 
Mexican Chile Pickers

U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue says the United States' current farm-labor visa program is "essentially unworkable."

Perdue did not specify why during a visit to Mexico on Friday, and he said the issue probably will not come up in talks next month on the North American Free Trade Agreement.

Mexico says it wants an "integral" approach to renegotiating the 1994 pact that addresses issues such as immigration. The country has also suggested it could look to South American grain if talks don't go well.
But Perdue said Mexico may just be talking about alternatives to U.S. grain, which supplies most Mexican feedlots.

Perdue noted that U.S. manufacturing has not benefited as much from NAFTA as the farm sector but expressed hope that agricultural products won't be targets of retaliatory measures.

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