The bi-monthly Farm Journal Pulse Survey recently asked farmers a simple question: “Do you think the U.S. should withdraw from the North American Free Trade Agreement?”
About one-third of the nearly 900 responses were positive. Producers who voted for getting rid of the agreement did so because they believe the Ag economy would be better off without the trade deal or because they believe the U.S. can negotiate better deals individually with Canada and Mexico.
At the other end of the spectrum, 40 percent said no to withdrawing, saying that NAFTA is crucial to U.S. farmers and to maintaining a low-cost food supply.
A quarter of the respondents said they’re still not sure if it’s necessary to keep or eliminate the 24-year-old trade pact with Mexico and Canada.
The varied responses are similar to the responses and positions of different ag trade groups, agribusinesses, and associations. While U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer is concerned about what he calls a “lack of headway,” trade officials from Canada and Mexico are still moderately optimistic a new NAFTA deal can get done by March of 2018.
From the National Association of Farm Broadcasting News Service.