China has committed to buy at least $80 billion in U.S. farm products over the next two years and the country also agreed to sweeping structural changes that promise to improve trade on a more permanent basis for U.S. beef, pork, rice, corn, wheat, soybeans and other commodities.
There’s no immediate relief in sight for American farmers, as corn stocks remain large and increased demand for U.S. crops remains elusive, ag economist Dan Basse of AgResource told attendees of the American Seed Trade Association conference in Chicago Tuesday.
China is going to lift tariffs to allow in more U.S. soybeans and pork, according to Xinhua News, a government-run media outlet, though it's unclear how much of the U.S. commodities will be allowed in, or for how long.
Net farm income is projected to rise more than 10% this year, but nearly one-third of producer earnings will come from a combination of crop insurance benefits and direct government payments, including the Trump administration's trade assistance.
President Donald Trump and White House officials insist that China will be buying $40 billion to 50 billion worth of U.S. agricultural products annually over the next couple of years, if the countries nail down a trade deal in the coming weeks, but the question is whether U.S. farmers, processors and exporters could meet that challenge.