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USTR Ambassador Ron Kirk Visits Blueberry Farm in Maine

08/05/2010 - 10:34am

When people think of delicious, plump blueberries, they often think of Maine.

What most people do not realize, however, is that Maine is the largest producer of wild blueberries in the entire world, exporting the fruit as far as Japan, Korea, Germany, Israel and the U.K.

Unsurprisingly, Maine also produces 99 percent of all the blueberries in the U.S., bringing a direct and indirect economic benefit of $250 million to the state.

On Thursday, August 5, United States Trade Representative Ron Kirk toured the G. M. Allen & Son blueberry farm. Located in Blue Hill, ME, the farm sells its blueberries across the country and exported 100,000 pounds of blueberry product to Canada just last month.

While visiting the farm with owner Annie Allen, Ambassador Kirk spoke on the benefits of the U.S. - Korea trade agreement, which will phase out the 45 percent tariff on blueberries over ten years. Trade agreements are one of the tools USTR is using to dissolve trade barriers around the world and pave the way for American farmers, manufacturers, small business owners and workers to export their products.

See pictures from his visit below.

Ambassador Kirk Tours GM Allen Blueberry Farm

Ambassador Kirk Tours GM Allen Blueberry Farm

Ambassador Kirk Tours GM Allen Blueberry Farm

Ambassador Kirk Tours GM Allen Blueberry Farm

Ambassador Kirk Tours GM Allen Blueberry Farm

Ambassador Kirk Tours GM Allen Blueberry Farm