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Farm Exporters Fear China Backlash In Tires Case

Tyson Foods Inc., the world’s largest meat company, and global grain titan Louis Dreyfus Commodities warned on Sept. 3 that China could cut back on imports of U. S. farm goods if President Barack Obama restricts U. S. imports of Chinese tires.

The companies, part of a coalition of more than 30 major farm and agricultural trade groups, urged the government to carefully weigh the consequences of a request by the United Steelworkers union to curb imports of Chinese tires.

The safeguard could prompt retaliation on products like pork and soybeans that would hurt U. S. farmers when exports already have been slashed by the global recession.

“For some, the Chinese market is the difference between profitability and possible bankruptcy,” the groups sai. in a letter to the U. S. trade representative.

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