The public policy blog of the American Enterprise Institute

Subscribe to the blog

Discussion: (3 comments)

  1. The same argument could be made for almost any product made in a foreign country compared with the United States. China could produce anything cheaper than the US because of their wage scales and quality of life issues. At least the US sugar industry employees local workers who pay taxes. This whole issue of sugar tarriffs comes up almost every year and usually by people that only regurgitate the columns they have read in the past. It is a tarriff but no subsidies are paid to the sugar companies. They borrow funds with sugar as collateral. They either pay back the funds or the government can sell the sugar so the American taxpayer does not pay for this with taxes…only higher sugar prices than they would pay if we bought all of it from Third World countries that subsidize their own sugar industries to a greater extent than we do. If these economists wanted to follow this line of reasoning to the nth degree we should be buying all of our food from foreign countries and see how long that works when diplomatic relations, wars or other disaster disrupt the food supply.

    1. Joe Lincoln

      Yes, so many people will starve without the sugar if we say started importing it from Brazil at a reasonable price.

      If it isn’t subsidized then why are farmers planting such large acreage of sugar beets? -Tying up valuable farm land that could be growing food to feed American consumers.

  2. Butch Wilson

    Domestic sugar is higher than world sugar, but the higher price reflects US labor and other operating cost that are much cheaper in other countries. The goverment sugar program helps protect our domestic sugar interest due to these higher cost. There are those that criticize the sugar program. Many of these domestic and foreign groups have self interest. Some of the candy manufacters in the US are good examples. The Hersleys and also the Brachs candy manufacters relocated their factories to Canada and Mexico because they said domestic sugar prices were too high. They now purchase foreign sugar at a lower price, but oops…the candy bar still has the same price tag that it had when manufactered in the USA. US manufacters that go overseas charge us the same home prices, while other cheaper products coming into the US will needless to say, go higher when oppertunity knocks. I think it is suffice to say we need more prgrams like the sugar program to protect our industries at home. I don’t mind paying more to keep US industries at home.

Comments are closed.

Sort By:

Refine Content:


Additional Keywords:

Refine Results

or to save searches.

Refine Content