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Tariffs 101: EU cheeses take a hike


Here’s what you need to know about the Trump administration’s proposed EU tariff hike: 

-In October 2019, the Trump administration imposed a 25% tax on EU imported goods, including textiles, cosmetics, spirits, wine, and cheese.

-This tax hike is in response to a long-running dispute over EU subsidies for Europe-based Airbus, which affect American aircraft manufacturers.

-Many beloved European products, including Parmigiano Reggiano, Provolone, and Moliterno al Tartufo, are affected; these cheeses generate up to $3.5 billion annual revenue and support at least 20,000 jobs across the US. 

-Retailers have begun stockpiling millions of dollars worth of affected products, but expect to run out long before year’s end.

-Some higher-priced items are expected to disappear from US shelves altogether, as the retail value rises and fails to offset the wholesale cost.

-The US is now threatening a 100% tax hike on imported EU goods in retaliation to France’s proposed digital services tax, which seeks to level the playing field for non-US based internet companies.

The good(ish) news:

-France is prepared to fight the proposed 100% tariff hike on behalf of their makers, if it comes to that. Their digital tax will go into effect January 23, 2020. 

-The quality of domestic cheeses is improving, as American cheese makers take inspiration from Old-World recipes and production methods.

-Shelf space could open up to give smaller American makers a chance in large-scale retail markets. 

Read the full list of products currently affected by the tariff hike here.

Margaret Leahy

Margaret Leahy is the Associate Editor for culture.

3 thoughts on “Tariffs 101: EU cheeses take a hike”

  1. Avatar Margaret Robinson says:

    I agree with Back Browne – let’s stay out of the politics. If you’re looking at imported cheese to buy, you can afford it. On the other hand, supporting some of the really good Artisan Cheeses that are made here isn’t such a bad idea either.

  2. Avatar Mick Browns says:

    I would suggest we stay out of political discussions regarding trade imbalance and tariffs. We can afford the extra $/ pound for imported cheese anyway. If not then buy some great American Artisan Cheese.

  3. Avatar Patricia Fetzer says:

    Do not punish American citizens for Airbus! This punishment of EU can be done another way!! The American people deserve to NOT have to pay such a high tariff for Scotch or Parmesan or good wine!

    Say NO to 25% tariffs on these EU items!!

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