Saturday, June 18, 2016

How U.S. Sugar Subsidies Are Destroying U.S. Manufacturing Jobs

By John Downs at Real Clear Markets. John H. Downs is the president and CEO of the National Confectioners Assocation, the trade group representing more than 600 companies engaged in the business of confectionery. Excerpts:
"The current sugar subsidy program is a Depression-era regulation that has no place in today's global economy. Because of this program, candy companies in the United States pay about double the global average price for sugar. While global prices began trending downwards in 2013, U.S. sugar has surged upwards due to continued reauthorization of the sugar subsidy program and regulations on Mexican sugar imports. This trend has a negative impact on candy makers, especially the small and mid-sized, family-owned companies that don't have flexibility in their supply chains. And it is doing irreparable damage to a storied industry consisting of multi-generational, innovative owners.

Today, the confectionery industry has a direct economic impact of $35 billion and provides 55,000 jobs in more than 1,000 manufacturing facilities across the country. At a time when many bemoan the loss of American manufacturing jobs, the candy industry remains heavily invested in the United States. Many confectionery companies remain family-owned and rooted in the communities where they began generations ago.

Sugar subsidies have a real impact on candy jobs. Once a booming American product in the candy industry, only one company in the U.S. continues to produce candy canes domestically. Spangler Candy Company has been headquartered in the small town of Bryan, Ohio for 110 years providing good-paying jobs and economic benefits for its community. Other communities have not been as fortunate, as they have seen other industries move their operations overseas due to the high cost of doing business here in the United States."

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