YOUR TEXAS AGRICULTURE MINUTE
U.S. ag trade deficit reaches record level in August
By Gary Joiner
New monthly trade data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) shows a record monthly trade deficit for agriculture.
In August, the U.S. had $12.5 billion in ag exports, but it had more than $16 billion in ag imports. The result is an ag trade deficit of over $3.6 billion in a single month.
It is the largest monthly trade deficit we've had in U.S. agricultural trade.
Economists say the strong U.S. dollar is behind the deficit.
Efforts to combat inflation in the last year and a half with strong interest rates is leading to a strong U.S. dollar. And that strong U.S. dollar makes imports relatively less expensive and agricultural export values lower.
In fact, overall U.S. ag export value is down by about 9%. The vast majority of the decrease is in major bulk products. Import figures for fresh and frozen vegetables are up more than 15% percent this year compared to last year.
The preceding commentary is brought to you by Texas Farm Bureau, the “Voice of Texas Agriculture.” Called “Your Texas Agriculture Minute,” TFB will issue thought-provoking editorials each week—via print and audio—to spark understanding of agriculture in the Lone Star State and its impact on each and every Texan.
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