U.S. Wheat Associates and the National Association of Wheat Growers were both very disappointed in the Trump Administration’s decision to impose tariffs on steel and aluminum imports. A statement says they have repeatedly warned of the risks of retaliation and the precedent set by such a policy would have potentially serious consequences for agriculture. The groups say it’s disappointing that the voices of farmers and many other industries were ignored in favor of an industry that’s already among the most well-protected in the country. Also, Brian Kuehl of the Farmers for Free Trade Organization says they are also deeply concerned that the move to impose tariffs will unintentionally hurt American agriculture. “These tariffs are very likely to accelerate a tit-for-tat approach on trade, putting U.S. agricultural exports in the crosshairs,” Kuehl says. “We’ve already seen China discussing tariffs on sorghum, while the EU and China have both indicated they will move forward with swift retaliation in the wake of these tariffs.” He adds that everyone agrees on the need to hold trading partners accountable but taking unilateral action like this will have unintended consequences. “The ag sector knows from experience that our ag exports are the first to be hit by retaliation,” he adds.
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