Monday, August 13, 2018

Members in the News: Countryman, Coble, Sumner, Miranowski, Glauber, Hurt, Laborde, and Schmit

Amanda M. Countryman, Colorado State University
American farmers want trade partners not handouts – an agricultural economist explains
Written by Amanda M. Countryman: The Conversation - July 31, 2018
The Trump administration plans to give American farmers and ranchers hurt by the current trade war US$12 billion in emergency relief to mitigate the impact of tariffs on their exports.
While this may lessen the blow of an already struggling agricultural economy in the short run, it is only a Band-Aid. As an agricultural economist, I know that no one really wins in a trade war. As someone who grew up on a cotton and alfalfa farm in rural Arizona, I know firsthand that producers want access to markets – not government handouts.
If the trade conflict with China continues much longer, it will likely leave lasting scars on the entire agricultural sector as well as the overall U.S. economy.

Keith Coble, Mississippi State University
Dan Sumner, University of California, Davis

John Miranowski, Iowa State University
Agri-Pulse Daybreak for August 7, 2018
By: Agri-Pulse - August 7, 2018
(4:54 - 5:25) Dan Sumner, an agricultural economist at the University of California-Davis, says farm workers in some areas of his state already make more than $15 an hour. In the Napa Valley, farms are paying $20 or more an hour. In the Central Valley, farmworkers are earning $13 an hour, he said yesterday at the annual meeting of the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association in the nation’s capital.
“Nobody thinks that’s going to be binding,” he said of the $15 minimum wage.
(5:25 - 5:55) The labor squeeze also is hitting home in the rural Midwest, said James Miranowski, an Iowa State University economist. He described how processing plants are adding to demand for labor in rural Iowa communities even as dairy operations already are struggling to find workers. A new Prestage pork processing plant in rural north central Iowa will employ 900 workers alone.
“Communities are going to have to get their acts together,” Miranowski said.
(6:45 - 7:08) “We are moving back to an era of ad hoc” farm assistance, said Keith Coble of Mississippi State University, AAEA’s president-elect.
Read more on: Agri-Pulse

Joseph Glauber, International Food Policy Research Institute
Trump’s $12 Billion Bailout Is No Remedy for Farmers Caught in Trade War
By: Foreign Policy - July 31, 2018
“This is a lot of money, and it’s difficult to try to make it fit into these WTO boxes; there’s some potential to go over,” said Joe Glauber, a former chief economist at the USDA. Plus, other countries could file a challenge if they believe U.S. farm support distorts global markets in any way, a case that might be easier to make.
“One way or another, this will get a lot of attention in Geneva other the next six months,” he said.
Read more on: Foreign Policy

Joseph Glauber, International Food Policy Research Institute
Chris Hurt, Purdue University
Trump's emergency aid to farmers could have negative side effects
By: UK’s Daily Mail - July 28, 2018
The size of the aid program is "unprecedented," said Joseph Glauber, a former USDA economist now at the International Food Policy Research Institute.
But its effectiveness will be limited, he said, and it creates a "moral hazard."
And ironically, depending on the criteria used, some of the benefits could go to Chinese-owned companies.
"The pork industry is dominated by very large corporations," said Chris Hurt, agricultural economist at Purdue University, in Indiana. "The largest hog producer in the US, Smithfield, is owned by a Chinese company."
Read more on: UK’s Daily MailBreitbartStraits TimesTimes Now News and Japan Times

David Laborde, International Food Policy Research Institute
The effects of Donald Trump's trade war
By: Politifact - July 28, 2018
Those price drops have ripple effects, too. Andrea Durkin, editor of the Center for Strategic and International Studies’ TradeVistas website, said farmers worried this season’s losses would impact their ability to secure future loans. David Laborde, senior researcher at International Food Policy Research Institute, said price drops would also drive down the price of farmers’ lands.
Read more on: Politifact

Todd Schmit, Cornell University
Dairy crisis taking a toll on North Country economy
By: WRVO - August 6, 2018
Cornell professor Todd Schmit, who teaches about food and agricultural economics, says that for every dollar of output generated at a farm in New York, it supports another 45 cents in related industries.
The volume of milk produced in the North Country in 2017 was higher than the amount in 2012, but that's because farmers leaving the industry are selling their cows to larger, corporate farms in the area. Schmit says that does not make up for the loss of small farms.
"Some evidence on related research that I’ve been doing has shown that small-scale farmers tend to purchase more of their inputs from local sources that in and of itself per dollar of output has a higher level of impact," Schmit said.
Read more on: WRVO

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*Articles in response to the AAEA Communicating Out Strategy Press Releases highlighting: Government Relations, American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Applied Economic Perspectives & Policy, Choices Magazine, General Media, and/or 2018 AAEA Annual Meeting in Washington D.C.

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