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Politics

Farm Bureau Leader: UF/IFAS Analysis Shows Destructive Effects of Mexican Farm Imports

June 15, 2019 - 7:45am
The damaging fruits of Free Trade
The damaging fruits of Free Trade

A new economic analysis conducted by a University of Florida/Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) team in Gainesville has confirmed Mexican imports have significantly harmed fruit and vegetable producers in the Sunshine State. 

A steadily increasing surge of Mexican products has entered the U.S. domestic market during Florida’s peak winter seasons since the North American Free Trade Agreement was implemented in 1993. Florida growers have lost large portions of the U.S. domestic market as well as sales volumes.

Using the period 2010 to 2018 for study, the UF/IFAS team focused on three farm products: tomatoes, strawberries and bell peppers. They found that as Mexican imports ballooned, production of these foods in Florida declined by 58 percent, 22 percent and 27 percent, respectively.

Researchers noted, “These trends are not expected to change unless something in the trade relationship changes.” The impact, they concluded, “will result in broader economic impacts across the state.”

Florida Farm Bureau President John L. Hoblick said the results of the analysis reinforce the conclusion that NAFTA has been a failure for many farmers in this state. “Our fruit and vegetable producers have been telling our public officials for more than 25 years how NAFTA has damaged their production and their livelihoods,” Hoblick declared. “They are in an economic crisis that can be averted by good faith negotiation with our Mexican neighbors.

"I urge President Trump and officials in his administration to pursue enhanced relief from cheap, largely unregulated Mexican imports before we lose an entire infrastructure in Florida and in other states in the Southeast,” he added. “The consequences of such a human-made disaster will affect Floridians as well as consumers throughout the nation.

“The new United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement does not go far enough to provide such relief. The Florida delegation’s unanimous endorsement of H.R. 101 points to a clear solution. Please support it.”

The UF/IFAS analysis is posted HERE.

Comments

If the agricultural gods in Florida can ban "Ugly Ripe" tomatoes because they "don't look good enough" ... they certainly should be able to ban tomatoes and other produce coming into the state from Mexico! (Agriculture represents just under 10% of Florida's annual GDP ... so it's not like Mexican produce is killing Florida's economy!)

What rock did your crawl out from??

You're dead wrong. Agriculture is the 2nd largest industry in the state of Florida, only 2nd to tourism.

Just under 10% of Florida's annual Gross Domestic Product. Just under 1/10th of Florida's economy. A drop in the bucket ... but a significant impediment to Florida's clean water woes.

If it weren't for illegal workers from south of the border, there would be no Florida tomatoes, strawberries and bell peppers.

Can tell youre an uneducated Democrat. That lie has been debunked many times over. Keep trying Trumps Hispanic support is growing.

Yup. And as automation continues to improve (specifically via robotics) agriculture jobs will become highly productive skilled jobs.

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