Meat and Poultry Groups Urge Prevention of Port Strike

The American Meat Institute joined a coalition of meat and poultry industry groups in asking President Barack Obama to intervene and prevent a strike at container ports from Maine to Texas.

The International Longshoremen's Association and the U.S. Maritime Alliance have been negotiating a new contract since April with little progress. The current labor contract between the two sides will expire on December 29th.

According to the coalition's letter - a strike of any kind at ports along the East and Gulf Coast could prove devastating for the U.S. economy. The coalition called upon the President to use all means necessary to keep the two sides at the negotiating table and head off a coast-wide strike.

Members of the coalition sent a similar letter earlier in the month due to a strike at the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach. While the full impact of that strike is still being calculated - economists estimated a 10-day lockout of West Coast ports in 2002 cost the U.S. economy a billion dollars each day of the lockout.

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