Tax Aid For Farmers May Not Cover Tariff Loss

Posted at 5:12 PM, Sep 03, 2018

Producers in the Mid-State will soon be able to apply for tariff aid from the federal government to offset losses to mitigate the trade damages sustained from other countries.

According to a release from the USDA, $12 billion in programs will be used to help offset losses from what the White House is calling unfair retaliatory tariffs.

“President Trump has been standing up to China and other nations, sending the clear message that the United States will no longer tolerate their unfair trade practices, which include non-tariff trade barriers and the theft of intellectual property," said U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue.

To benefit farmers impacted by import and export taxes, the USDA will be implementing a program to pay back some of the lost funds.

For example, corn farmers would receive 1 cent a bushel while soybean farmers would get $1.65. Dairy farmers would get 12 cents per 100 pounds of milk.

Jeffrey Turner is a dairy farm in Lebanon. He said he appreciates the help but doesn't know whether 12 cents will cover the loss.

"Per 100 pounds of milk last month, we got a little less than $17 is what we got to bring home," said Turner. "To put that in comparison, President Trump's tariff is going to pay out 12 cents per 100 weight."

However, experts in the dairy industry say that amount won't come close to covering what's lost.

“The dairy-specific financial assistance package provided by USDA – centered on an estimated $127 million in direct payments – represents less than 10 percent of American dairy farmers’ losses caused by the retaliatory tariffs imposed by both Mexico and China," said National Milk Producer Federation president Jim Mulhern.

The president's plan promises for a better economy once foreign countries fall in line with the United States' trade demands.