American farmers are facing their worst economic crisis in more than 30 years as China’s trade war intensifies ahead of the official start of Trump’s reelection campaign, according to Axios.
More than 498 farmers filed for bankruptcy in 2018. Last year’s numbers are the second worst in recent history, behind those recorded during the farm credit crisis of 1987, when 6000 farm owners filed for bankruptcy.
The strong GDP growth and low unemployment rate registered in the rest of the economy, have not been reflected in the farming sector. Profitability in that industry slid to $63 billion in 2018 (the second lowest in a decade), driven down by decreasing Chinese demand, near-record flooding, and low commodity prices.
In Wisconsin, one of the country’s agricultural powerhouses, two dairy farms closed per day last year. The dairy industry generated $43.4 billion per year and employed 12% of the workers in the state.
The administration announced in March a $16 billion subsidy package for farmers affected by the ongoing trade disputes, which will be added to the $7 billion aid package already in place. The policy will allow the government to buy the industry's surplus products and disburse direct payments to farmers.