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Bilateral Trade Agreements; Farm Bill Completion

**Two U.S. wheat groups say the Trump Administration is putting too much emphasis on reworking existing trade agreements and not enough focus on negotiating new trade deals.

U.S. Wheat Associates and the National Association of Wheat Growers want the President to keep his promise to negotiate new bilateral trade agreements in place of the Trans Pacific Partnership.

Wheat Associates’ Steve Mercer tells Brownfield, U.S. wheat export competitors have been actively negotiating new trade agreements, while the U.S. is focused on renegotiating existing agreements like NAFTA.

**Plans for a large processing plant are in the works outside Great Falls, Montana. If approved, the proposed Madison Food Park would be Montana’s largest slaughterhouse and meat processing plant.

According to Brownfield, it will include state-of-the-art food processing plant for cattle, pigs, and chickens and will include facilities for processing both fresh milk and cheese products as well as a distillery.

More than 3,000 acres of undeveloped farmland have reportedly been sold to Alberta-based Friesen Foods.

**The chairman of the House Agriculture Committee, Mike Conaway, says his original goal of finishing the 2018 farm bill by the end of this year is still a possibility.

Conaway tells Brownfield, he hopes to have everything lined up by the end of this fourth quarter or early the first quarter of next year.

Senate Ag Committee chair Pat Roberts is talking about a similar timeframe, but Conaway thinks the House Ag Committee is a little further along in the process.

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