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International trade war concerns farmers

New tariffs on agricultural products could impact Iowa economy

Posted: Jun 21, 2018 9:22 PM

HANLONTOWN, Iowa - Words from Washington, D.C. are now having an impact in Iowa and Minnesota, as an international trade war with China heats up.

Last Friday, the U.S. and China started a war of words, with each one targeting the other countries' exports through 25% tariffs on $50 billion in goods. Then on Monday, the Trump administration moved to identify $200 billion in additional Chinese imports to be penalized with 10% tariffs.


Kelly Hansen is the General Manager at POET Biorefining Hanlontown, which operates 26 plants across 7 states. He's seen farmers come through and discuss the ongoing tariff war between the U.S. and other countries.

With China being the top export market for Iowa soybeans, as well as being one of the key markets for corn, he feels for their concerns.

"It's pretty clear that the talk of tariffs, the debate over tariffs, and the back and forth is pretty significant and does impact most of those farmers."

And it's not just China that is enacting tariffs on U.S. exports. Mexico has recently imposed a 20% tariff on imports of U.S. apples, potatoes, and cranberries, while Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has announced that they will impose tariffs on $12.8 billion worth of U.S. goods in response to the U.S.'s own tariffs on steel and aluminum.

U.S. Senator Joni Ernst released a statement on the tariffs on Tuesday, saying that they are "nothing more than a tax on Iowa farm families and the escalating trade war is putting the livelihoods of our rural communities in the crosshairs."

Hansen believes Iowa politicians may be able to help out with the situation.

"We're very fortunate, in the state of Iowa particularly, to have two strong Senators that are heavily involved in trade and that are well connected with the White House and with the administration. And I have every confidence that they will represent us well."

Senator Ernst and Senator Chuck Grassley met with U.S. Ambassador to China and former Iowa Governor Terry Branstad on Wednesday to discuss trade between the two countries, and the impact the tariffs will have on Iowa's farmers.

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Reported Deaths: 1514
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Hennepin12597787
Ramsey4963229
Dakota242192
Stearns241419
Anoka2266109
Nobles16726
Olmsted114715
Washington113740
Mower9602
Rice8488
Scott7624
Clay59138
Kandiyohi5781
Blue Earth4942
Wright4835
Todd4012
Carver3951
Lyon3272
Sherburne3255
Freeborn2970
Watonwan2380
Steele2371
Benton2203
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Nicollet17312
Martin1715
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Crow Wing10812
Le Sueur1081
Pine1070
Chisago1021
Otter Tail1001
McLeod920
Dodge880
Carlton870
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Polk822
Chippewa791
Isanti750
Waseca710
Douglas650
Murray650
Itasca6412
Meeker611
Morrison611
Faribault600
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Becker570
Jackson550
Sibley542
Pennington520
Renville362
Beltrami340
Brown342
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Wabasha330
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Fillmore300
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Houston270
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Wilkin213
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Cass162
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Mahnomen101
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Hubbard80
Lake60
Stevens50
Traverse50
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Cook10
Lake of the Woods00

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Confirmed Cases: 32064

Reported Deaths: 731
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Polk6739181
Woodbury326044
Black Hawk232358
Buena Vista171911
Johnson13408
Linn130482
Dallas129129
Marshall106019
Scott84510
Story8063
Pottawattamie74512
Dubuque74222
Wapello70830
Crawford6783
Muscatine64944
Sioux4810
Tama46829
Wright3851
Louisa36313
Jasper32517
Plymouth3245
Warren2911
Dickinson2663
Webster2484
Washington2459
Cerro Gordo1901
Hamilton1891
Boone1501
Clay1370
Allamakee1334
Clarke1333
Mahaska11717
Shelby1170
Clinton1131
Poweshiek1078
Carroll991
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Franklin950
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Henry863
Cedar851
Hardin810
Taylor800
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Benton681
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Jefferson620
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Butler592
Hancock551
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Calhoun542
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Lee542
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Monroe517
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