Indiana soybean farmers worry about possible China tariffs

LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Some Indiana farmers worry that the struggling soybean industry could face another blow if China imposes tariffs on U.S. soybeans.

The Journal & Courier reports that soybean prices have dropped by nearly half following the 2012 drought that caused some countries to go elsewhere for soybeans. Supplies have been increasing, but rising equipment costs and interest rates add to farmers’ debt.

Kevin Underwood is a Tippecanoe County councilman and a soybean farmer. He says more than half of the soybean produced in Indiana is exported, with China being one of the crop’s main importers. Underwood says the potential tariffs could lower soybean prices by up to 20 percent.

Indiana produced 320 million soybean bushels last year, equaling about $4 billion.