Aug 12, 2019

Food bought from American farmers to offset trade war pain will go to school cafeterias

Photo: Katherine Frey/The Washington Post via Getty Images

School cafeterias are set to receive free food purchased by the Department of Agriculture to relieve farmers hurt by the U.S-China trade war, the AP reports.

The big picture: The USDA has spent $1.2 billion to buy up food to redistribute to nutrition programs through "trade mitigation" — long part of its practices to help farmers, though usually on a far smaller scale — as part of the $16 billion aid package for farmers hit hard by retaliatory tariffs.

  • The state of play: Because the agency bought much more food than usual, its typical target programs, like food banks, are maxing out from the surplus. That's allowing it to send some food to school cafeterias, which haven't received bonus foods from the USDA in years. They'll still only get a small piece of the "trade mitigation" food: $27 million.

Yes, but: School lunch menus are scheduled far in advance and some ingredients — think: kidney beans and almond butter — may not fit in well. And some schools don't have the storage capacity to hoard their surplus.

Go deeper: Where China is getting its goods while U.S. farmers languish

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Nebraska's corn farmers are "outraged" at Trump

A corn farmer in Polk, Nebraska. Photo: Andrew Burton/Getty Images

Corn farmers in Nebraska are "outraged by the Trump administration's lack of support for the American farmer," according to a Thursday press release by the Nebraska Corn Board and the Nebraska Corn Growers Association.

The big picture: Farmers across the U.S. have had to cut costs, take up side gigs and go without health insurance to stay afloat during the U.S.-China trade war. The Trump administration has promised billions in aid to affected farmers, though an analysis showed that most paid so far went to the country's largest and wealthiest farmers.

Go deeperArrowAug 30, 2019

Trump says he is "the chosen one" to take on China in trade war

Speaking to reporters outside the White House Wednesday, President Trump looked to the sky and proclaimed "I am the chosen one" while arguing that "somebody" had to take on China over their unfair trade practices.

Go deeperArrowAug 21, 2019

Trade between U.S. and China plummets ahead of October negotiations

Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Trade between China and the United States has continued to fall ahead of October negotiations and a further tit-for-tat escalation of tariffs, according to customs data reported by AP.

The big picture: Imports of American products to China dropped to $10.3 billion in August, down 22% from the same month last year. Chinese exports to the U.S. also plummeted to $44.4 billion in August, down 16%. China's trade surplus with the U.S. shrunk to $31.3 billion in August, down $27 billion from a year prior.

Go deeperArrowSep 8, 2019