News Room

With Sugar Agreement, NAFTA Modernization Key to Supporting Jobs in U.S. Grocery Manufacturing

GMA Press Contact

Rosie Hilmer

office: 202-295-3937

(Washington, D.C.) The Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) issued the following statement today on behalf of Pamela G. Bailey, GMA’s president and CEO, following the announcement of the agreement reached between the U.S. and Mexico on sugar trade.

“Following the sugar agreement announced today, GMA welcomes the United States and Mexico, along with Canada, turning to the critically important task of modernizing NAFTA.

“NAFTA has helped to create a strong and vibrant North American market by eliminating nearly all tariffs on processed food and beverages, thus supporting the 2.1 million U.S. jobs in food and beverage manufacturing that are the largest source of U.S. manufacturing jobs, driving growth in the U.S. economy, and benefitting consumers. We look forward to working with the Administration, Congress and other stakeholders on ways to modernize and enhance a more-than-20-year-old NAFTA agreement, including by addressing non-tariff trade barriers.

“U.S. processed food and beverage exports totaled around $40 billion in 2016, which is roughly a third of all U.S. agricultural exports, and approximately $17.6 billion of those processed food and beverage exports were destined for Canada and Mexico. With 95 percent of the world’s potential consumers living outside the United States, exports to foreign markets are key to future growth and employment in U.S. grocery manufacturing.”


The Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) is the trade organization representing the world’s leading food, beverage and consumer products companies and associated partners. The U.S. food, beverage and consumer packaged goods industry plays a unique role as the single largest U.S. manufacturing employment sector, with 2.1 million jobs in 30,000 communities across the country that deliver products vital to the wellbeing of people in our nation and around world. Founded in 1908, GMA has a primary focus on product safety, science-based public policies and industry initiatives that seek to empower people with the tools and information they need to make informed choices and lead healthier lives. For more information, visit