Western Growers, who represents local and regional family farmers growing fresh produce in Arizona, California, Colorado and New Mexico, provided the following news release on Sept. 25:

In response to the announcement of the U.S.-Japan Trade Agreement, Western Growers President and CEO Tom Nassif issued the following statement:

“Western Growers extends its appreciation to President Trump for his leadership on the U.S.-Japan Trade Agreement, which opens up real market opportunities for producers of fresh fruits, vegetables and tree nuts. Our members will now have access to the Japanese market on equal footing with the Asia-Pacific signatories of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership.

“Japan is the third-largest market for American agricultural products, and the elimination of tariffs on produce products such as almonds, blueberries, walnuts, broccoli and prunes – as well as the staged tariff elimination for additional products like cherries and oranges – will result in significant export opportunities for our members and the broader fresh produce industry.

“We are also pleased to learn that President Trump and Prime Minister Abe have agreed to further negotiations to address the remaining non-tariff barriers to trade. Historically, Japan has used non-scientific sanitary and phytosanitary standards to prohibit many high-quality U.S. fruits, vegetables and tree nuts from entering the Japanese market. Therefore, to ensure the market gains secured in the U.S.-Japan Trade Agreement are fully realized, we must continue to push for reform of the Japanese importation system.”