Mexico today levied punitive tariffs – 10 percent effective today, escalating to 20 percent on July 5 – on unprocessed pork (not including variety meats) in retaliation for tariffs on its metal exports to the United States. Mexico’s decision follows similar retaliation in early April by China, which imposed additional 25 percent tariffs on U.S. pork, reducing live hog values by as much as $18 per animal on an annualized basis. The following statement may be attributed to Jim Heimerl, NPPC president and a pork producer from Johnstown, Ohio.
“The toll on rural America from escalating trade disputes with critically important trade partners is mounting. Mexico is U.S. pork’s largest export market, representing nearly 25 percent of all U.S. pork shipments last year. A 20 percent tariff eliminates our ability to compete effectively in Mexico. This is devastating to my family and pork producing families across the United States.
“We appreciate the variety of interests and issues the Trump administration is balancing in its trade negotiations with Mexico, China and other countries. While producers are trying to be good soldiers, we’re taking on water fast. The president has said that he would not abandon farmers. We take him at his word.”
The U.S. pork sector sustains more than 500,000 jobs across rural America. More than 110,000 of these jobs are directly tied to exports of American pork.