Upon Further Review: The Chinese Trade War is Slamming Farmers Across the Nation

   The Trade War against China, though seemingly small to most Americans, is having a major effect on farmers, especially those right here in the outer parts of Dayton and throughout Ohio.

   Something any Ohioan who gets out of town occasionally would notice is that Ohio is a popular area to grow, you guessed it, corn and soybeans. But why? Here’s a quick science lesson.

   Corn grows great here in Ohio, with weather and land that support its needs, but it sucks up a lot of nutrients in the soil, making it impossible for farmers to only grow corn plants. Eventually, the soil runs out of nutrients and cannot grow sustainable corn, or any plant, that is, except beans. Soybeans, a plant that also happens to grow great here in Ohio, puts a lot of nutrients back into the soil. Seems to me like a match made in Heaven.

   Because these two grow so well together though, it is the plant of choice for most Ohio farmers. Unfortunately though, tariffs on fruits and other plant are already growing, and there are more proposed coming soon. China has announced yet another tariff of 25 percent on soybeans. That means farmers are about to make a significant amount less of their soybeans, more specifically $1.7 billion in losses to U.S. soybean value.

   Steel and its products also possess tariffs that have forced farmers to pay more money for farm equipment they use to produce their crop. That means it may cause some farmers to stop producing, if these tariffs continue, as they are unable to pay for working equipment, seed and other basic necessities.

   According to the New York Times, by July this year farmers have already lost an estimated $13 billion as an effect of the Trade War.

   President Trump announced in July, though, that they would provide $12 billion in emergency aid to farmers affected by the trade war. This is a big political move, as the state of Iowa is one of the largest soybean producers in the nation.

   We can still help aid in this ‘my boat is bigger than your boat battle’, though that may appear silly at first glance. If you ask me, it’s a step in the right direction. Let’s be real, trade with China has already cost us a more than 300 billion dollars in debt and it has to change.

   This trade war affects all of us. By buying American made products you can help be a part of a change. Even better, stay informed on what is going on internationally and how it affects your community.

   This trade war has been brewing since before the Obama presidency. Now we must watch it all unravel, working to pay our debts and to change the way our government handles money, one financial battle at a time.

Kelsey Fitzpatrick
Staff Writer

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