The U.S. Dairy Export Council (USDEC), Arlington, Va., said it partnered with the Pan American Dairy Federation (FEPALE) to foster collaboration in promoting trade and combating trade-inhibiting regulations and policies.

The partnership is designed to enhance communications and information-sharing between the U.S. and Latin American dairy sectors, USDEC said. It is also meant to provide better coordination and education of governments across the region to ensure that international regulations remain science-based and that opposition is put forth against non-scientific regulations that could disrupt trade in forums such as World Health Organization, the Codex Alimentarius Commission, the Office of International Epizootics, and others.

“It’s important for the U.S. dairy industry to take proactive steps to be involved in international discussion about product regulations,” said USDEC President and CEO Tom Vilsack. “U.S. milk is the safest and highest quality in the world, and this partnership will mutually benefit the United States and Latin America on regulatory issues.”

A key element of the partnership is the establishment of a forum for members of FEPALE that will focus on standards in the areas of animal health, milk production, quality, sustainability, nutrition and other issues, USDEC said.

“The partnership will develop and promote a strong network between the U.S. dairy industry and the dairy industries of Latin America to protect and enhance milk sales through regulatory cooperation as well as policy partnerships,” said Jaime Castaneda, USDEC’s senior vice president.

USDEC said the partnership between FEPALE and USDEC will:

  • Improve the information and knowledge of FEPALE members on issues related to international organizations of importance to the sector.
  • Promote the development of international standards, or scientifically-based guidelines, that support the pre-competitive functioning of global dairy markets.
  • Monitor international regulatory issues related to the defense of the dairy sector, especially those related to commercial issues in global markets.
  • Establish within FEPALE a "Regulatory Forum” or "Regulatory Affairs Committee” to promote, inform and train the members of the federation on the importance of these issues.

Dr. Ariel Londinsky, general manager of the Pan-American Dairy Federation, said FEPALE is excited about the new opportunity to promote milk products throughout the region.

“World consumption of dairy products continues to increase, and this new partnership will ensure producers have a strong voice when it comes to regulatory issues,” he said.