Kane County — Lucas Strom, who runs a century-old family farm in rural Illinois, cancelled an order to buy a new $71,000 grain storage bin in March — after the seller raised the price 5% in a day. The reason: steel prices jumped right after US President Donald Trump announced tariffs. Throughout US farm country, where Trump has enjoyed strong support, tariffs on steel and aluminium imports are raising costs for equipment and infrastructure and causing some farmers and agricultural firms to scrap purchases and expansion plans, according to Reuters’ interviews with farmers, manufacturers, construction firms and food shippers. The impact of rising steel prices on agriculture illustrates the unintended and unpredictable consequences of aggressive protectionism in a global economy. And the blow comes as farmers fear a more direct hit from retaliatory tariffs threatened by China on crops such as sorghum and soybeans, the most valuable US agricultural export. A&P Grain Systems in Illinois ...

Subscribe now to unlock this article.

Support BusinessLIVE’s award-winning journalism for R129 per month (digital access only).

There’s never been a more important time to support independent journalism in SA. Our subscription packages now offer an ad-free experience for readers.

Cancel anytime.

Would you like to comment on this article?
Sign up (it's quick and free) or sign in now.

Speech Bubbles

Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.