USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack was a special guest speaker of the Commodity Classic and his address focused on rebuilding a declining rural America. Vilsack said that will require improvements in U.S. export markets, and in that arena he delivered good news.

“I am pleased to announce that as a result of the conversations with the Russians we’ve finally reopened the pork opportunities for American pork,” the Secretary said. Then he added, “We still have teams over there today trying to reopen the poultry industry.”

Late last year Russia had effectively prohibited U.S. pork shipments to the country when they delisted almost all U.S. pork facilities.

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