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Why Soybeans Are at the Heart of the U.S.-China Trade War

Why Soybeans Are at the Heart of the U.S.-China Trade War

While the Asian nation is targeting a slew of American farm goods in this round of taxes, soybeans are the top agricultural commodity the country imports from the U.S. by far. The oilseed, used to make cooking oil and animal feed, accounts for about 60 percent of the U.S.’s $20 billion of agricultural exports to China. If China retaliates with 25 percent tariffs, American shipments may drop by at least $4.5 billion, according to a study by the University of Tennessee. Brazil, already the world’s biggest soybean shipper, is set to be the biggest winner, filling the gap left by the U.S.