Trade tariff concerns for Eastern North Carolina Farmers

DUPLIN COUNTY, NC (WITN) - Duplin County, the largest pork producing county nationwide, is expecting a negative economic hit from trade tariffs.

According to the Department of Agriculture, Duplin county produces more pork products than anywhere else and hog Farmers say they will feel the impact of the Chinese tariff increase, but say everyone else in areas where hog farming is a key contributor to local economy, will see the increase too.

As of Monday, Chinese tariffs are now five times what they used to be, jumping from 5 percent, to 25 percent, on some U-S food items, according to Forbes.

Pork is on the list, and hog farmers in Duplin County say this change could cause less revenue to come in. While farmers share that concern, they say, the impact of the tariff increase expands to the general public.

Hog Farmer Ronald Simmons said, "The moment that increase hits, typically it takes 30 to 60 days before it hits the end consumer, but everybody is going to feel it, and so that's the big concern with the tariffs with China."

Farmers say the tariff increase will likely cause the cost of their products in China to go up, which is expected to result in a decrease in Chinese sales, and therefore less revenue coming in.