Bunge Ltd.’s CEO says China has stopped buying U.S. soybeans as trade war tensions between the two countries heat up.
Soren Schroder told Bloomberg in a report that China is buying soybeans from Brazil and Canada, are “very deliberately not buying anything from the U.S.”
In the past month, China announced a proposed 25 percent levy on 106 U.S. product imports worth $50 billion, including many agricultural commodities, including yellow and black soybean, corn, corn flour, durum wheat, wheat and mixed wheat, brewing or distilling dregs and waste, sorghum, uncombed cotton and cotton linters, and pork and beef products.
Soybeans are the top U.S. agricultural export to China, and the U.S. is the second-largest soybean supplier to China, behind Brazil. In 2017, China imported $13.9 billion of U.S. soybeans, 61 percent of total U.S. exports and nearly one-third of annual soy production, according to the American Soybean Association (ASA).
The U.S. Department of Agriculture said China has canceled 62,690 metric tons of U.S. soybean purchases in the two weeks ending April 19.
Two weeks ago, reports said cargo ships carrying U.S. sorghum en route to China changed course hours after China announced that it would impose a nearly 179 percent tariff on U.S. sorghum imports. Of the 20 ships carrying U.S. sorghum that were on the water at the time, at least five changed course after China’s announcement. The armada was carrying more than 1.2 million tons of the grain, valued at more than $216 million.
“The U.S. animal food manufacturing industry will undoubtedly feel the ripple effects from the U.S.-China trade dispute as it will make it harder for our members and customers, American farmers and ranchers, to compete in the global marketplace,” American Feed Industry Association President and CEO Joel Newman previously told WATTAgNet.
A U.S. delegation was set to meet with Chinese officials today to discuss trade relations between the two countries.