USTR Ambassador Ron Kirk Visits Bangor State Fair
United States Trade Representative Ron Kirk attended the Bangor State Fair today to meet with local farmers and businessmen to discuss Maine’s exports. In his tour, Ambassador Kirk highlighted Maine’s agricultural exports and how they contribute towards the creation of more American jobs and growth in the U.S. economy. In 2009, Maine’s agricultural exports totaled $120 million. Its top agricultural export was vegetables at $46 million. Maine was the 12th largest state exporter of fruit in 2009, which $34 million in total fruit exports. Ambassador Kirk also attended the livestock show. In 2009, Maine’s poultry exports totaled $5 million.
Ambassador Kirk also met with 4-H student representatives at the State Fair. Established in 1902, the 4-H club continues to offer leadership, citizenship and life skills for young people through practical experiences. The Maine 4-H club has more than 20,000 young members, and it offers “hands-on” learning opportunities in government programs, healthy lifestyle programs, science programs and environment-oriented programs. Membership in the Maine 4-H club increased by approximately ten to fifteen percent in 2010.
Ambassador Kirk highlighted that Maine’s exports, especially its agricultural exports, could gain new support from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the passage and implementation of the pending U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement. Boosting Maine’s exports would help to create additional export-supported jobs and to improve the U.S. economy.
See pictures from his visit below.