Proposed Tariffs on European Products Would Devastate Specialty Food Sales

Photo: Pexels

Photo: Pexels

Originally Appeared in Presence Marketing News, September 2019
By Steven Hoffman

The Trump administration is currently considering adding tariffs this fall to a large number of items imported into the U.S. from the European Union (EU), including most foreign cheeses. Many top-selling and popular cheeses including Italian Parmigiano-Reggiano and Dutch Gouda could become twice as expensive, reports Modern Farmer. The tariff proposal would increase duties on hundreds of EU products by as much as 100%. Originating from a trade dispute in the aviation industry, the proposed tariffs, supposedly meant to punish the EU, will end up directly impacting specialty food retailers who are already operating on thin margins. According to the Specialty Foods Association, the latest list of proposed tariffs includes 100% levies on a range of pork products, cheeses, pastas, coffee, olives and other goods. “If something happens, we are insulated for a time,” Bob Marcelli, owner of specialty food importer Marcelli Formaggi in Clifton, NJ, told Specialty Food News. “But long term, it would be just devastating. Everybody’s going to pay more; that’s the bottom line, he said.