Chinese trade turmoil adds to uncertainty for Missouri farmers

8 months 1 week 17 hours ago Wednesday, April 04 2018 Apr 4, 2018 Wednesday, April 04, 2018 5:57:00 PM CDT April 04, 2018 in News
By: Nora Faris, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - As Missouri farmers prepare for the spring planting season, trade relations between the U.S. and China are sowing seeds of uncertainty. 

After the U.S. announced tariffs on $50 billion of Chinese imports, China announced intentions to impose a similar tariff on 106 American products. The proposed 25 percent tariffs target up to $50 billion in U.S. goods annually.

Those products include things like cars, whiskey and chemicals. But the tariffs will also apply to agricultural products like soybeans, pork, beef and corn—products that are particularly important to Missouri's rural and agribusiness economy.

For Missouri farmers, these trade threats from China amount to far more than a hill of beans. One in four rows of US soybeans is destined for export to China. And according to a study by the U.S. Soybean Export Council, Chinese soybean imports from the U.S. could drop by 70 percent if China moves forward with its proposed trade restrictions. Nations in South America stand ready to fill in the gap in U.S. soybean exports to China.

MU agricultural economist Scott Brown said this trade volatility comes at an already difficult time for U.S. producers.

"The loss of potential trade with China can't come at a worse time, when we're already seeing increased production and lower prices," Brown said.

Brown said these fights with key trading partners like China are a mixed bag for consumers.

"In the short-run, as product backs up here in the US as a result of decreased trade, we might see lower food prices," Brown said. "But in the long term, as producers adjust, we might see marginally higher food prices as producers adjust to the new trade environment." 

Pat Westhoff, director of the MU Food & Agricultural Policy Research Institute, said recent trade tensions among the U.S. and its NAFTA, EU and Asian trading partners are already complicating the economic outlook for American agribusinesses.

"Now, we've added uncertainty to what was already a pretty uncertain environment," Westhoff said. "The hope is that there might be some changes made in policies that will benefit the U.S. overall."

Both the U.S. and Chinese tariffs are still only proposals and have not yet taken effect. However, market uncertainty has already caused significant economic volatility, as evidenced by recent stock market tumbles. 

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA - A second-degree domestec assault charge against Missouri Football defensive end will not be filed, according to the... More >>
1 hour ago Tuesday, December 11 2018 Dec 11, 2018 Tuesday, December 11, 2018 8:24:00 PM CST December 11, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - After almost three years, Jefferson City now has new and improved fire trucks. Jefferson City Fire... More >>
2 hours ago Tuesday, December 11 2018 Dec 11, 2018 Tuesday, December 11, 2018 7:03:00 PM CST December 11, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Neighbors on Lasso Circle in Columbia's Old Hawthorne neighborhood feel safe, but are more vigilant exactly a year... More >>
3 hours ago Tuesday, December 11 2018 Dec 11, 2018 Tuesday, December 11, 2018 6:07:00 PM CST December 11, 2018 in News
FULTON - Fulton Soup Kitchen is working to open its new location in Fulton, but a $1,700 utilities down payment... More >>
4 hours ago Tuesday, December 11 2018 Dec 11, 2018 Tuesday, December 11, 2018 5:18:00 PM CST December 11, 2018 in News
OZARK, Mo. (AP) — The southwest Missouri city of Ozark that had said it was removing a Christian cross from... More >>
4 hours ago Tuesday, December 11 2018 Dec 11, 2018 Tuesday, December 11, 2018 5:17:00 PM CST December 11, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA- The Columbia Police Department is investigating a death downtown. CPD announced the investigation on Twitter just after 4... More >>
5 hours ago Tuesday, December 11 2018 Dec 11, 2018 Tuesday, December 11, 2018 4:44:00 PM CST December 11, 2018 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — An eastern Missouri doctor has been sentenced to more than three years in prison for prescribing... More >>
7 hours ago Tuesday, December 11 2018 Dec 11, 2018 Tuesday, December 11, 2018 2:48:09 PM CST December 11, 2018 in Continuous News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — A Kansas City man who told officers he was planning to kill someone and was "kinda... More >>
7 hours ago Tuesday, December 11 2018 Dec 11, 2018 Tuesday, December 11, 2018 2:42:49 PM CST December 11, 2018 in Continuous News
JEFFERSON CITY - As Missouri's Secretary of State waits for a response from the State Auditor, a political expert weighed... More >>
7 hours ago Tuesday, December 11 2018 Dec 11, 2018 Tuesday, December 11, 2018 2:41:00 PM CST December 11, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The Columbia Police Department has been dispatched to Ballenger Lane in North Columbia 11 times so far this... More >>
7 hours ago Tuesday, December 11 2018 Dec 11, 2018 Tuesday, December 11, 2018 2:21:00 PM CST December 11, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Walgreens is giving Missouri a new tool in the fight against opioid abuse, and it's a simple... More >>
7 hours ago Tuesday, December 11 2018 Dec 11, 2018 Tuesday, December 11, 2018 2:02:00 PM CST December 11, 2018 in News
TAOS - A school bus holding 38 students ranging from K-12 was hit head-on Tuesday morning while stopped on Dove... More >>
9 hours ago Tuesday, December 11 2018 Dec 11, 2018 Tuesday, December 11, 2018 12:19:00 PM CST December 11, 2018 in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — Both U.S. senators from Missouri are demanding answers about the death of a veteran after an... More >>
11 hours ago Tuesday, December 11 2018 Dec 11, 2018 Tuesday, December 11, 2018 10:58:05 AM CST December 11, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Gunfire in the neighborhood around Blue Ridge Elementary School led to a modified lockdown Tuesday afternoon, and police... More >>
11 hours ago Tuesday, December 11 2018 Dec 11, 2018 Tuesday, December 11, 2018 10:39:00 AM CST December 11, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Jefferson City Public Schools has named the first football head coach for the new Capital City High... More >>
12 hours ago Tuesday, December 11 2018 Dec 11, 2018 Tuesday, December 11, 2018 9:55:00 AM CST December 11, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The agreement between the Jefferson City School District and the city will reimburse the school district up... More >>
14 hours ago Tuesday, December 11 2018 Dec 11, 2018 Tuesday, December 11, 2018 7:30:00 AM CST December 11, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Firefighters responded to a residential structure fire overnight. The blaze started around 11:49 p.m. Monday. The fire... More >>
18 hours ago Tuesday, December 11 2018 Dec 11, 2018 Tuesday, December 11, 2018 3:16:00 AM CST December 11, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Some students are starting to voice their opinions about possible redistricting of a new middle school. CPS... More >>
1 day ago Monday, December 10 2018 Dec 10, 2018 Monday, December 10, 2018 8:30:00 PM CST December 10, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 47°
10pm 44°
11pm 44°
12am 44°
1am 43°