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Smart Talk is a daily, live, interactive program featuring conversations with newsmakers and experts in a variety of fields and exploring a wide range of issues and ideas, including the economy, politics, health care, education, culture, and the environment.  Smart Talk airs live every week day at 9 a.m. on WITF’s 89.5 and 93.3.

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Host: Scott LaMar

PA Farmers and NAFTA/Dairy herds being sold

Written by Radio Smart Talk | Feb 11, 2018 6:27 PM
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What to look for on Smart Talk Monday, February 12, 2018:

Pennsylvania farmers are wary of President Trump's threat to withdraw the United States from the North American Free Trade Agreement or NAFTA with Mexico and Canada.  Throughout his campaign, Trump called NAFTA a bad deal for the U.S.  Now the president seems intent on renegotiating NAFTA.

37% of foreign agricultural export products from Pennsylvania go to Mexico and Canada and Pennsylvania has gained 1.5 million farm-related jobs since NAFTA's implementation in 1994.  So, the state's farmers have a huge stake in a new trade agreement or eliminating NAFTA altogether.

Pennsylvania Farm Bureau President Rick Ebert has expressed the need for NAFTA's strong agricultural component and he explains on Monday's Smart Talk. 

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Rick Ebert, Pennsylvania Farm Bureau President

Meanwhile, while Pennsylvania has the second most dairy farms in the country -- second only to Wisconsin -- more farmers are getting out of the dairy business.  The state lost 120 dairy farms in 2016.

There are several reasons including a steady decline in milk consumption in the U.S. since the 1970s, milk production growing in other countries and regulated milk prices.

What does the future look like for Pennsylvania's dairy industry?

That's the question we'll discuss on Monday's Smart Talk with Jayne Sebright, Executive Director of Center for Dairy Excellence and David Smith, Executive Director of the Pennsylvania Dairymen's Association.

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Jayne Sebright, Executive Director of Center for Dairy Excellence and David Smith, Executive Director of the Pennsylvania Dairymen's Association.

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