Washington, DC (June 8, 2018) – In response to Senate Agriculture Committee Chairman Pat Roberts’s release of the 2018 Farm Bill, the Sweetener Users Association (SUA) issued the following statement.
“As the Senate debates the Farm Bill in the coming weeks, lawmakers will have a key opportunity to help sustain and create American jobs and advance the competitiveness of one of the largest manufacturing sectors by modernizing the sugar program. On both sides of the aisle, there is broad support for making modest reforms to the only commodity subsidy program that has not been updated in more than 80 years.
“We believe America’s sugar policy shouldn’t be a lopsided, one-way deal that only benefits sugar producers while causing economic harm to sugar end users. We believe American consumers and businesses deserve a fair sugar policy, and we trust the Senate does too.”
The sugar program impacts every American consumer and the ability of American food and beverage manufacturers who use sugar in the products they make to compete in the global marketplace. American consumers pay an annual hidden tax of between $2.4 to $4 billion on sugar-containing products. More than 600,000 American workers are employed in these industries and their jobs are at risk. That is because while their competitors in Canada, for example, can access sugar at the world price, American manufacturers are forced to pay twice as much, hampering their ability to generate economic growth in their local communities and create and sustain jobs. According to the U.S. Department of Commerce, for every sugar-processing job subsidized by higher U.S. sugar prices, three manufacturing jobs are lost.