• Trade war affecting Mid-South farming

    By: Winnie Wright


    TIPTON CO., TENN - Farmers are getting out in the fields to bring in this season’s yield, all while President Trump’s trade war looms on.

    Another change in the weather, another season of uncertainty for Mid-South farmers.

    “It’s been something this year. The prices right now are as low as they were when I was farming in 1981,” David McDaniel, Tipton County Farmer told FOX13.

    McDaniel and his sons farm cotton, soy, and corn in Tipton County. They planted seed this spring uncertain they’d even have a buyer come harvest. Now that harvest is here, he said they can’t afford to sell their product at market value.

    “Expenses, they haven’t gone down. They’ve gone up. It’s a struggle right now with the markets where they are,” McDaniel told FOX13.

    Instead, they’re keeping their harvest stored, hoping to sell it at a better price once the trade war has ended. That means his family won’t be paid until that time comes.

    “You’ve still got bills to pay, equipment to work on, fuel costs. And nothing is going down,” McDaniel said.

    Farmers aren’t the only ones affected in much of the Mid-South, agriculture is a primary economic driver. If they aren’t spending money, the entire community suffers.

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    McDaniel voted for President Trump. FOX13’s Winnie Wright asked him if that will change in 2020.

    “I still support President Trump. It is a tough time. I know he has to do some of the things he’s doing. It’s hard, but I think it needs to be done,” McDaniel said.

    On Friday, President Trump tweeted that he’d made a deal with China that would benefit farmers. McDaniel said he’s cautiously optimistic.

    “It is kind of a hard thing to watch when it seems like nothing is really happening. They just keep saying there will be another deal; they’ll make a deal next week or next month. It does get tough thinking it may never get done,” McDaniel told FOX13.

    For now, McDaniel is relying on his farmer optimism: next season will be better.

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