retail news in context, analysis with attitude

The Wall Street Journal reports that “ticked-off Canadians, irked by U.S. metals tariffs and President Trump’s harsh words for their prime minister, are boycotting American products and buying Canadian.”

According to the story, “The push to buy more Canadian products—and to boycott American ones—gained strength after the U.S. levied 25% tariffs on Canadian steel and 10% on aluminum starting June 1 and President Trump called Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau ‘very dishonest & weak’ on Twitter following a Group of Seven meeting the following week. Canada in turn imposed retaliatory tariffs on some U.S. products, including foodstuffs such as ketchup, orange juice and yogurt.”

The Journal notes that Canada “is the U.S.’s top export market, taking a little more than 18% of all U.S. goods that are sold abroad. Sylvain Charlebois, a professor in food distribution and policy at Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia, estimates roughly 40% to 60% of food on Canada’s grocery shelves is from the U.S.”
KC's View:
Hard to imagine this tariff thing working out anytime soon. The Wall Street Journal this morning has a story about how “the European Union, Canada, China and Mexico have launched retaliatory tariffs” on cranberries, “a species native to North America that has suffered from overproduction in recent years. That is threatening to reduce demand for cranberries, hurting farmers who grow them and leading companies abroad to substitute other juices and berries rather than raise prices for consumers. The average price for cranberries has fallen below $30 a barrel—$5 below the cost of production—and growers say they expect prices to slide even further as sales abroad dry up.”

And here’s the thing - the Journal notes that “most of the cranberry bogs in the U.S. happen to be in House Speaker Paul Ryan’s home state of Wisconsin.”

Cranberries. Who would’ve guessed?