Farmers for Free Trade, a bipartisan campaign to rebuild support for trade at the grassroots level, released a new report on Feb. 27 highlighting how American farmers and ranchers have traditionally paid the price for trade disputes in the form of retaliatory tariffs on ag products. The report comes as the Trump Administration makes final decisions on placing tariffs on steel and aluminum and in the wake of new tariffs that have been erected on solar panels and washing machines.
“While everyone agrees we need to hold our trading partners accountable, taking unilateral action to raise tariffs often comes with harmful unintended consequences here at home,” said Brian Kuehl, Executive Director of Farmers for Free Trade. “History shows those consequences are most often paid by American farmers in the form of retaliatory tariffs on the ag exports farmers rely on to make ends meet. At a time when farm incomes have decreased and global supply has increased, it’s vital that we not take any action that would result in reducing American agricultural exports. It’s more important than ever that U.S. leaders take a thoughtful approach to raising trade barriers that weighs the impact of retaliation on American agricultural exports.”
The report includes a lengthy list of ag products that have been targeted in disputes just over the last two decades including disputes over cross-border trucking, country of origin labeling, and tires. The report also includes the specific tariff level assigned to a range of ag products.