Statements On China Tariffs And Trade Retaliation

The Trump Administration's announcement of $60 billion in new tariffs against Chinese imports into the United States has already prompted a response from China. It is considering placing import duties on US pork and ethanol, two significant corn markets. 

"Any potential tariff retaliation or trade war with another country is not good for American farmers, because we are reliant on ag exports," said Philip McCoun, KyCorn Promotion Council member and USGC director-at-large. "While China has not been a significant market for corn, we sold more than $1 billion of pork and $80 million of ethanol to the country last year. Higher tariffs on our exports going to China may be detrimental to the rural economy."  

According to the USDA Foreign Agriculture Service, $20 billion of U.S. agricultural goods were shipped to China in 2017. 

U.S. Grains Council (USGC) President and CEO Tom Sleight, said in a statement yesterday, the organization was not surprised but is dismayed by the new tariffs, which will lead to "painful retaliation" and have already complicated global efforts to promote sales of U.S. grains and grain products.

"The farmers and exporters we represent have been here before in our relationship with China," Sleight said, describing trade policy actions by China against U.S. distiller's dried grains with solubles (DDGS), sorghum, ethanol and corn. "We have supported targeted, U.S. government efforts to address these issues but nevertheless remained dedicated to the China market because it holds immense growth potential for U.S. agriculture."

In the near term, he said the Council will work to continue efforts to spur demand that supports prices this crop year, though that is challenged by the reputational hits the United States has taken in recent months based on trade policy concerns among global customers.

Read more from US Grains Council

China Targets U.S. Agriculture in Response to U.S. Trade Actions

Statement from US Meat Export Federation

Trade, PolicyJennifer Elwell