Wisconsin Representative Ron Kind sent a letter of Ag Secretary Sonny Perdue demanding that he have a plan to provide certainty and support for family farms amidst the trade talks with China.
Kind points out in the letter that the secretary refers to farmers as “casualties” of the trade war.
Kind sent the letter as a deadline for new tariffs on Chinese goods is set to take effect on December 15th and after Trump suggested that waiting to settle the dispute until after the 2020 elections is an option.
Kind’s home state of Wisconsin loses an average of two farms a day and is on top of the nation in terms of the number of family farmers who’ve declared bankruptcy.
It’s the second-straight year that Wisconsin has led the U.S. in that dubious category.
As U.S. farmers face sometimes overwhelming challenges, they’re finding export markets increasingly closed off.
In the first four months of this year, Wisconsin agriculture exports dropped nearly five percent compared to the previous year.
Ag exports to China dropped by 31 percent. Kind says Wisconsin taxpayers have forked over $743 million in additional tariffs since the trade war began in March of 2018.