The U.S. Department of Commerce set duties of 17% to 2.99% on Mexican sugar imports in a preliminary determination, according to an Independent Bakers Association (IBA) press release. American sugar growers allege that the Mexican government subsidizes sugar production to an extent that it causes substantial financial injury to American growers.

“One word: ludicrous,” states IBA Chairman Ron Cardey. “The U.S. government subsidizes American sugar, and it costs bakers and consumers billions of dollars, yet our elected officials do nothing. American sugar growers claim the slightest loss, and the U.S. government leaps to their defense.”

The preliminary determination requires importers of sugar from the mills owned by the Mexican government, GAM company, and other Mexican companies to place 17.01%, 2.99% and 14.87%, respectively, of the imported value into escrow accounts. If the Commerce Department finds in its final decision that Mexican sugar did not injure American sugar growers, then the escrowed funds will be returned to importers. The final decision is expected in April or May 2015.

American growers also filed anti-dumping petitions against Mexico, which the Commerce Department continues to review. In October, it is expected to announce a preliminary determination against Mexico with anti-dumping duties as high as 64%.

Source: Independent Bakers Association