Washington tree fruit growers spared from new Chinese tariffs

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It looks like Washington tree fruit growers will be spared from the latest round of Chinese tariffs. The Capital Press reports most of the agricultural products targeted for retaliatory tariffs are minor processed foods and drinks or industrial products.

Northwest Horticultural Council President, Mark Powers says the current 50 percent duty on apples, cherries and pears remains in place. Last year, Powers estimated the trade dispute would cost the Northwest about 129 million dollars in lost apple sales to Mexico, China and India. The ongoing trade war with China has cherry growers on edge with the harvest about a month away. Northwest Cherry Growers President, BJ Thurlby says a 20-pound box of cherries at 60 dollars wholesale becomes 70 dollars with freight to China. He says adding a 50 percent tariff increases the cost to 105 dollars, which importers and consumers will probably not buy.