The decreased purchasing power of Chinese markets as a result of the coronavirus is creating further uncertainty for Illinois farmers.
The Chinese economy entered a downturn as a result of fears of the coronavirus. That’s creating doubt as to whether China will be able to fulfill its promises to increase purchases from the United States as part of the newly negotiated trade deal. Illinois farmers rely on Chinese purchases of their crops and livestock. Eldon Gould, a hog farmer in Maple Park explained his concerns.
“I maybe don’t want to go so far as to say, say it’s one more nail in the coffin, but it’s one more hurdle to jump over, I mean we’ve been through the tariffs and still are to some degree,” he said.
Gould worries that the long term effects are unclear. This uncertainty and the continued tariffs on American exports are leading many farmers to seek alternative markets.