Long ago CCM chronicled the disparity in farm programs around the world that place the California citrus industry as a disadvantage. Almost 20 years ago we noted that the EU subsidized their citrus industry to the tune of what is now a billion dollars! Today we are noting that farming costs in the Southern Hemisphere such as Chile, Mexico, Peru, and South Africa allow for sales at levels below what the California grower needs for a net per acre return that puts a few dollars in the pocket. Well the EU has hidden away a pricing system that we can only envy.
Last week the EU Commissioner of Trade Defense noted that their citrus industry is being negatively impacted by imports from Morocco, Egypt, Turkey, and South Africa. This is from a country that receives a majority of the billion dollars’ worth of assistance. This may well trigger their hidden gem, the entry price system. If imports come in at an agreed upon level below that which gives a legitimate return to the EU citrus producer, a value added tax or a price increase will be leveled on the cost of the carton. We plan to bring this up in our next round of Washington, D.C. visits the week of 4/29.