The Secretary of State to the French Ambassador.

No. 406.]

Excellency: Referring to the memorandum sent to you this day by the department in reply to your memorandum of March 26 last, relative to commercial relations between the United States and France, and particularly the duty on Porto Rican coffee, I have the honor to bring to your attention the several ameliorative changes which this Government would be pleased to have made by your Government in its present restrictive regulations affecting the admission into France of American cattle, meats, fruits, and plants.

That the present prohibition of entry for American cattle and sheep shall be abolished, and hereafter live stock imported from the United States shall be admitted for slaughter at the port of debarkation on the same terms as prevail for American cattle in the ports of Great Britain, namely, entry for slaughter within 12 days after debarkation. The prohibition of American cattle, which was originally imposed on account of Texas fever, is not justified by any actual conditions in the United States.
That the present burdensome restrictions applicable to transit through France of American live cattle exported to Switzerland shall be so amended as to permit the normal development of this trade between the United States and Switzerland. It is desired that such [Page 303] cattle be allowed to be shipped through Havre without being detained 40 days at that point and being subjected to the tuberculin test, but, of course, subject to veterinary inspection and reasonable supervision.
That France shall admit American pork products upon production of the certificate of inspection issued by the United States Department of Agriculture in accordance with the provisions of the new meat-inspection law approved June 30, 1906, and shall not hereafter require a certificate showing microscopic analysis for trichinae to accompany these products of American origin. The new system of official inspection in this country of American cattle and meats intended for export is thorough, scientific, and stringent, and the official certificate of inspection should be accepted by France as a guaranty of the purity and wholesomeness of the products covered by it.
That the present classification of dry salt fatbacks—which are unsmoked bacon—under the heading of “Sausage, blood pudding, mincemeat, and meat patties,” shall be changed to the heading “Salted, pickled, or smoked, including hams and bacon.”
That the present regulations excluding from France fresh apples and pears imported from the United States that are found slightly infested with San José scale shall be modified in order not to hamper the development of trade. The heavy freight charge on such shipments prevents the shipper from forwarding fruit that is sufficiently marked with scale to be disfigured thereby, so that practically the only fruit that shows scale is such as escapes the attention of the packer. The few scales that are found on such fruits are dead, and therefore harmless, their presence not impairing the wholesomeness of the fruit in any way. It is the opinion of expert entomologists that there is practically no danger from this source and that the exclusion of such fruit accomplishes no useful purpose, being only a burdensome restriction upon legitimate trade between the countries.
That the exclusion of American bulbs and herbaceous nursery stock on account of San José scale shall be abandoned. The department is informed that that scale is never carried on such material.

For the purpose of dealing thoroughly and intelligently with the several points above mentioned, I have the honor to suggest that your Government send a commission of its own experts to the United States, with instructions to examine into the workings of the official inspection system now in operation in this country.

It is hoped that the liberal treatment of France by the United States in the matter of the new customs regulations of the United States, especially with reference to acceptance of the certificates of the French chambers of commerce on equal terms with those issued by German chambers of commerce, will be accepted by the Government of France as evidence of the earnest desire of the Government of the United States to put the trade relations between the two countries on the most favorable basis possible.

Accept, etc.,

Elihu Root.