Tariffs imposed by the U.S. on aluminum and steel are seeing retaliatory tariffs on everything from pork to apples. And it will have a local impact, as Marcus Bellissimo reports.
In response to the Trump Administration’s tariffs on aluminum and steel, Mexico announced yesterday that effective immediately imports of apples from the U.S. would be subject to a retaliatory tariff of 20 percent. Apples are just one item on the list of U.S. products that Mexico is targeting.
Washington State produces 65 percent of all apples grown in the US and over 90 percent of US fresh apple exports. Mexico gets almost all of its apples from Washington and is the top export market for Washington apples. Last season Washington growers shipped nearly 14 million 40-pound boxes to Mexico, valued at more than $215 million. This season, shipments have been 13 percent ahead of last year and were on track to exceed 15 million bushels.
Todd Fryhover, President of the Washington Apple Commission, said the new tariff puts that goal in doubt. He said any tariff will have economic impacts on the industry – especially with tariffs imposed by China and expected tariffs within the next few weeks from India, both major Washington apple export markets, all in retaliation to U.S. steel and aluminum tariffs.