Letters to the Editor: Diffusing trade issue; Comey book waste of time

Letters to the Editor: Diffusing trade issue
By: Rep. Salud Carbajal | 4/19/2018

Diffusing trade issue

With recent rhetoric coming out of the White House, our Central Coast agriculture industry is currently feeling the direct effects of escalating trade tensions.

President Trump’s tweets on imposing tariffs on Chinese steel could soon have negative impacts on Central Coast agriculture jobs and businesses. The Chinese government has since retaliated by slapping new tariffs on many U.S. products, including an additional 15-percent tariff on local berry and wine industries.

The California wine industry represents 85 percent of U.S wine production and 97 percent of U.S wine exports. China is a key market for our wine producers, meaning wineries on the Central Coast stand to suffer long-term damage because of the new tariff.

Fortunately, China has yet to announce the start date for these tariffs, and there is still ample opportunity to avert an escalating trade war. I’m working with colleagues on both sides of the aisle urging the president to resist using impulsive and inflammatory rhetoric that ultimately hurts our agriculture industry.

Agriculture remains a top industry and way of life on the Central Coast. Growing up working alongside my father picking strawberries and cucumbers during summer breaks in high school, I know first-hand the value that this billion-dollar industry provides our communities.

As Farm Bill negotiations move forward, I will continue advocating for well-funded specialty crop research grants, invasive pest prevention funding, expanding crop insurance, and other programs Central Coast growers depend on.

Our farmers, ranchers and vintners are the backbone of this country. From passing a strong Farm Bill, to fighting for responsible trade policies that benefit our agriculture industry, I will continue working hard support our local agriculture industry.

Rep. Salud Carbajal

24th District

U.S. Congress

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