WASHINGTON — The American Bakers Association applauded the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s decision on June 1 to reinstate The Netherlands as an exporter of pasteurized egg products to the United States. The ban had been in place since November 2014.
“We are very happy with the response from the U.S.D.A. to expedite the approval of egg products from The Netherlands,” said Robb MacKie, president and chief executive officer of the A.B.A. “This swift response is a direct result of A.B.A. members taking action to ensure that U.S.D.A. and Congress react appropriately to this crisis.”
The A.B.A. said its membership weighed in with close to 1,000 e-mails and phone calls to the U.S.D.A. and members of Congress asking for additional import opportunities. Egg supplies have been under pressure due to the avian influenza outbreak, and the U.S. egg market is struggling to fulfill demand needs for bakers and other food producers, the A.B.A. said.“We are now at about 35% of the egg product supply being taken offline due to the avian influenza,” said Cory Martin, director of government relations for the A.B.A. “Opening imports from The Netherlands is a big step in the right direction, but more is needed. We are facing a true crisis, and without additional actions to increase supply, bakers and many other food manufacturers face dire situations in the coming weeks and months.”