Georgia’s senators are asking for federal officials to look into squash and cucumber imports. Recently, Republican senators David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler wrote a letter to the U.S. Trade Ambassador, Robert Lighthizer, informing him that Mexican imports of the two commodities have been quickly rising, and domestic growers have seen prices fall below production costs. Lighthizer recently requested similar investigations of imported bell peppers and strawberries, which could result in tariffs or other measures.
“Prices have followed supply, and growers are now reporting tumbling prices across the board for vegetables,” the senators wrote in the Nov. 18 letter.
“Yeah, this very well may just be a political stunt, trying to drum up some support in a state where they’re both going to be facing a very tough reelection bid,” said Matt Mandel, finance and legal vice president for Rio Rico-based importer SunFed, whose top two products are squash and cucumbers.
According to fronterasdesk.org, he said that if such investigations did lead to tariffs or quotas, U.S. consumers would ultimately lose out, adding: "All it's going to do is limit access, which is going to raise prices.”