Trade Retaliation Already Hurting Pork Producers
The National Pork Producers called for a swift resolution to the U.S.-China trade dispute because pork producers are feeling the pain.
Iowa State University Economist Dermot Hayes says U.S. pork farmers have lost $2.2 billion on an annualized basis. The losses are a direct result of the events leading up to and following China’s 25 percent punitive tariffs in retaliation for U.S. tariffs on aluminum and steel. NPPC President Jim Heimerl says U.S. pork has invested significant funds into ramping up pork production in order to take advantage of opportunities around the world, which include China and other markets throughout the Asia-Pacific region.
NPPC applauds the president for making agriculture exports a cornerstone in the negotiations with China. “Since March first, when speculation about Chinese retaliation against U.S. pork first started,” Hayes says, “hog futures have dropped by $18 an animal. That translates to a $2.2 billion loss on an annualized basis.” Hayes adds that, while not all of the lost value can be attributed directly to the trade friction between China and the U.S., it certainly is the main factor.
The market disruption that’s being caused by the trade uncertainty comes at a time when American pork production is expanding to record levels.