Mexican imports of squash, cucumber hurting U.S. farmers, ITC finds

ITC studies show heavy Mexican squash, cucumber imports hurting U.S. farmers

ITC studies show heavy Mexican squash, cucumber imports hurting U.S. farmers

The findings revealed in the recent reports from the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) on the effect of cucumber and squash imports on U.S. farmers show that  trade relief is urgently needed, according to the Florida Fruit and Vegetable Association (FFVA).

The reports paint a picture of surging volumes of fresh fruits and vegetables imported from Mexico that have impacted domestic production and U.S. jobs over the last several years.

The ITC reports claim unfair practices have fueled the explosive growth of Mexican fruit and vegetable imports resulting in grave harm to U.S.  producers, demonstrating a clear need for the federal government to provide timely and effective relief for impacted farmers in Florida and other seasonal crop states.

The report finds, over a five-year period, skyrocketing imports of Mexican cucumbers and squash have reduced domestic output by a total of 567,000 metric tons (mt) and slashed domestic revenue by nearly $500 million.

“The ITC reports confirm what our Department’s reports have long shown and what Florida’s seasonal producers have long felt: unfair trade practices being employed by Mexico and others are devastating the domestic market, putting local farmers out of business and risking the security of our domestic food supply,” said Florida Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried.

“While Florida has been the hardest hit and Mexico has been the worst offender, seasonal producers across the United States are being impacted by similar unfair trade perpetrated by several foreign markets.

"This harm is also not isolated to our squash and cucumber growers, as a large number of other domestic perishable produce sectors have sustained similar, if not greater, harm due to Mexico’s unrelenting volume increases."

Two recent reports from the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services and the U.S. Department of Agriculture Economic Research Service have also documented the challenges that U.S. growers are experiencing amidst surging imports from Mexico.

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