The Washington Apple Commission says it will be receiving US$8.5 million through the USDA Agricultural Trade Promotion (ATP) program funding to help mitigate the effects of the increased tariffs in major markets.
U.S. apples last year were hit by a 20% tariff for its main market, Mexico, as well as a 40% going into China. In addition, India - which last season became Washington state's third-biggest market - is threatening to increase tariffs by 25%.
The ATP program, funded at a total US$200 million, will develop and grow export markets to mitigate adverse effects of trade conflicts with foreign countries.
“We appreciate the USDA’s support of the apple industry and their understanding of the challenges we are facing due to retaliatory tariffs in our export markets. This funding will be key to building markets and reducing the impact on Washington apple producers,” said Todd Fryhover, president of the Washington Apple Commission.
“We are thankful for the work and diligence from the USDA Foreign Agriculture Service in assessing and determining funding.”
The ATP funds allocated by the USDA Foreign Agricultural Service to various agriculture commodity groups will be used to increase promotional efforts and alleviate the impact of additional costs and challenges in export markets during trade disruptions.
Washington state exports one-third of its fresh apple crop and 90% of U.S. apple exports originate from Washington.