Lucas Stands Up for Oklahoma Beef Producers

Feb 21, 2024
Agriculture
Press

Washington, DC – Today, Congressman Frank Lucas (OK-03) joined an effort to halt the Biden Administration’s rule allowing for the importation of fresh Paraguayan beef, which has historically been affected by the viral foot-and-mouth disease. The USDA’s most recent inspection of cattle in Paraguay was nearly a decade ago. 

Congressman Lucas (OK-03) joined Rep. Ronny Jackson’s (TX-13) joint resolution of disapproval under the Congressional Review Act today to halt the rule. In December, Lucas also joined Rep. Tracey Mann (KS-01) and others in sending a letter urging U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack to pause the implementation of this rule until more recent data is procured.

“The Biden Administration is irresponsibly allowing the importation of fresh beef from a country historically plagued by foot-and-mouth disease. We must protect the American cattle herd from devastating foreign diseases, which is why I’ve called on the USDA to use recent, reliable data in its decision-making,” said Rep. Frank Lucas. “Until then, this reckless rule must be halted immediately in order to protect not just our Oklahoma beef producers, but the entire American beef industry.”

“USDA is basing their decision to allow beef imports from Paraguay on nine-plus year old data. OCA’s understanding from USDA’s own reports is the most recent inspections in Paraguay by USDA officials were done in 2014. Given Paraguay’s longstanding challenges with foot-and-mouth disease (FMD), it is unacceptable to allow imports without more recent and up-to-date information. We sincerely appreciate the proposal to pause this erroneous rule until more up to date data can be collected.” 

-Michael Kelsey, President of Oklahoma Cattleman’s Association 

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