Canada's envoy to Washington has shot back at criticism by President Donald Trump and USA milk producers, saying the facts don't support a charge that the Canadian dairy industry is to blame for the woes of some American farmers.
MacNaughton first responded soon after Trump's remarks, sending a letter to the governors of Wisconsin and NY, both us dairy strongholds, saying "the facts do not bear out" the USA president's criticism of Canada.
"More broadly, tens of thousands of dairy farmers will be affected by the larger scope of what Canada is doing, which is using pricing policy to offload milk powder in global markets where it will be competing with USA exports", said Chris Galen, a federation spokesman.
In Canada, he continued, "some very unfair things have happened to our dairy farmers and others and we're going to start working on that".
Canada has made a decision to impose import taxes on ultra-filtered milk, a protein liquid concentrate used to make cheese.
Canadian dairy producers recently chose to collectively lower their prices in order to compete with cheaper, American imports. About 70 dairy producers in both USA states are affected.
U.S. President Donald Trump set his sights on Canada's supply-managed dairy industry.
Trump promised a group of leaders including Gov. Scott Walker, several senators from Wisconsin and Speaker Ryan would join him to figure out the Canadian trade situation starting Tuesday.
But the only Canadian politician who's actively opposed the marketing board system is Conservative leadership candidate Maxime Bernier, contradicting not only his party's most recent policy vote but also his past statements as a cabinet minister.
"I don't expect there would be many countries that would do anything other than support a WTO action against Canada", said Australian Dairy Farmers interim Chief Executive John McQueen.
Damsteegt said he feels "terrible" for the Wisconsin dairy farmers who approached Trump with concerns about their lack of market opportunities.
The dispute also could impact the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement, or NAFTA.
President Donald Trump has vowed to help, calling Canada "very unfair".
"Political reality means that external pressure like (Trump) is the only way to force changes to the Canadian system", Herman said. "I think that you would have to say the Canada-U.S. trading relationship is a model for the rest of the world".
- The Canadian government says the USA has a 5-1 edge in its favour when it comes to the dairy trade between the two countries.
After having greatly disparaged Mexico, President Trump is now attacking Canada.
Morneau and USA counterpart Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin will be in Washington on Thursday for meetings that will include central bank governors and officials from the International Monetary Fund and World Bank. Dairy farmers have already been crippled by years of stagnating milk prices, and one Central New York milk producer - Cayuga Milk Ingredients - has said it could lose 25 percent of its sales after investing more than $100 million in an ultra-filtered milk processing plant.
It also harkens back to the USA election campaign trail, when Trump regularly lashed out at specific industries, and even individual companies, and decried NAFTA as one of the worst deals ever made.
Trump says he'll have more to say about upcoming NAFTA negotiations within a couple of weeks.
Trump said his order would minimize exemptions that allow foreign companies to bid on projects in the USA, something Canada now enjoys under NAFTA.
Schumer a year ago tried to intervene in the dairy dispute, which he said unfairly harms Cayuga Milk Ingredients, a milk processing plant near Auburn.