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Farmer: Pork Tariff Talk Has Immediate Impact On Market

Teodor Lazarev/Shutterstock

Ohio hog farmers are reacting to the news that China is planning to attach a tariff on U.S. pork exports. That’s in response to the U.S. proposed tariff on Chinese steel. Farmers say this is a move that has an immediate effect.

“The message is get it worked out,” said Brian Watkins, a lifelong hog farmer from Kenton who wants President Donald Trump, top federal officials and leaders from China to resolve the impending trade dilemma.

He says China’s proposed 25% tariff on pork creates a volatile marketplace with ripples that can instantaneously hit farmers.

“Something happens somewhere in the world that very quickly, I mean immediately essentially within hours gets filtered into the price being paid for what we receive,” Watkins said.

China accounts for $488 millionin U.S. pork exports. The Ohio Pork Council says, because of the nature of the industry, it’s hard to pinpoint exactly how much business Ohio farmers get from China.

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