Home 5 Ag Stories Trade war puts a strain on producer’s pockets

Trade war puts a strain on producer’s pockets

Source: Wikimedia Commons

The United States will soon impose additional tariffs on Chinese goods. However, American businesses, farmers and ranchers say they cannot endure much more.

AUDIO: Senator Joni Ernst (R-IA)

Senator Joni Ernst (R-IA) on Saturday spoke with producers at the Iowa State Fair (ISF). Topics discussed ranged from year-round E-15 sales to the 2018 Farm Bill. An item weighing heavily on producers minds, however, was trade.

Senator Ernst’s constituents voiced their thoughts about the federal aid package, designed to help producer’s directly impacted by tariffs.

“I think they’re reflective of my own thoughts, which is we would much rather see trade, not aid,” Ernst said. “They are pushing back a little bit on that aid packing; they’re not very happy about that. They would much rather see us get good trade deals done, get our goods out to an open market around the globe and see a little bit of optimism out there. They don’t want the government subsidizing their operations.”

Producers, of all ages, expressed concerns about a drawn out trade war, citing difficult financial situations.

“Our more senior members of the farming/ranching community, they’re doing okay. Things are tough – it’s a little tight, but they’re doing okay. They said we can hangout a little bit longer. But what I’m hearing from younger farmers, those that don’t have enough capital built up in their operations, (is) things are a little harder. They’re having tough discussions with their bankers. I’ve been saying we can’t take optimism to the bank. So we need to see some sort of results coming from the Administration,” Ernst said.

Ernst says she will continue to push President Trump for new and improved trade deals.

“We will keep pressing him,” Ernst said. “I visit with him every couple (of) weeks about the trade issue, encouraging him to get NAFTA done – at least a bilateral with Mexico – and keep working on a deal with Canada. Then a little bit longer-term goal is, of course, to get a great deal with China because they do consume a lot of our American products.”