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Claire H. Smith

International Trade Commission finds dumping injures lemon juice industry


November 03, 2006

Sherman Oaks, CA (November 3, 2006) – Today, the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) voted unanimously to continue an investigation of dumping allegations, by ruling preliminarily that U.S. lemon juice producers have been materially injured by Argentine and Mexican imports. The decision was made in response to a petition filed on September 20, 2006, by Sunkist Growers, Inc., (supported by Ventura Processing), requesting that antidumping duties be levied to offset the unfair prices offered by Argentine and Mexican processors into the US market over the past three years.

“We are very pleased that all the commissioners voted to move forward with this investigation,” said Tim Lindgren, Sunkist President and CEO. “The U.S. has simply been flooded with unfairly priced juice in recent years, disrupting the market and making it very difficult to earn a reasonable return. A thorough investigation is warranted by both the Commission and the Commerce Department.”

On October 13, the ITC held a preliminary conference to review the data contained in the petition concerning the material injury caused by dumped imports from both countries. On October 11, the U.S. Department of Commerce formally decided to initiate an investigation in response to the September 20 petition.

Both the ITC and the U.S. Dept. of Commerce will continue the investigation, with a preliminary determination of dumping scheduled for February 28, 2007. If affirmative, this decision may impose an antidumping tariff on imports from those countries, which should strengthen the bulk price for juice in the United States. Given the limited volume of lemon juice which is used in making beverages, any additional duty is very unlikely to be felt by the consumer at the checkout counter, but will help domestic processing remain a viable user of domestic lemons.

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