The Administration’s inquiry into the causes of significant trade deficits affords an opportunity to consider the deleterious effects of U.S. sugar policies on the export prospects of other U.S. agricultural commodities. If past trade agreements have often failed to completely open foreign markets to U.S. farm goods, one reason is that the United States negotiates with one hand tied behind its back, due to the overriding political imperative to protect the U.S. sugar industry and insulate it from competition. By permitting our trading partners to retain more of their trade barriers than would be the case otherwise, U.S. negotiators’ imperative to protect sugar has reduced the gains from trade agreements and indirectly driven up trade deficits with these countries. We will first explain the importance of exports to the U.S. farm and food sector, and then draw the contrast with sugar.