Wichita Co. farmer believes USMCA could help with oversupply

Local News

WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — One Wichita County farmer said the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement could affect farmers locally, but not right away.

On Thursday, the US Senate overwhelmingly passed the USMCA and President Donald Trump has said he is ready to sign it.

Wichita County farmer Kenneth McAlister said he hopes this will help with supply and demand because for now, supply outweighs demand.

“I’ve been here for 34 years and I know this has been going on for a long time, it’s been an unfair trade all the way around,” McAlister said.

McAlister grows wheat, cotton and grain in the Texoma area.

“Hopefully with this trade deal with China and Mexico and Canada, we can eventually work on getting some of this oversupply that we’ve got stocked up moved to help feed whatever we need to be feeding, whether it be the humans or the livestock,” McAlister said.

Trump is expected to sign the USMCA which could benefit farmers like McAlister in the long run.

“Wheat is our primary crop here and wheat is a huge deal for Mexico, their number one importer is wheat from the US,” Wichita County Texas A&M Agrilife Extension agent David Graf said.

The impacts locally aren’t expected to be felt right when Trump’s pen meets paper.

“I’d love to see $5.50, $6 wheat automatically overnight, it’s not going to happen,” McAlister said.

“In world stocks with wheat, our production in the world has exceeded demand seven out of the last 10 years,” Graf said.

With supply greater than demand, wheat prices specifically are lower than McAlister would like to see, but he’s hopeful the USMCA increases price because of a rise in demand.

“It’ll be something to help us to be able to plan a little further down the line on what’s to expect,” McAlister said. “We’ve got to make a fair trade with everybody, we’ve been on the backside of the trade for quite some while.”

It’s a waiting game now, but impacts for local crop producers could be worth the wait.

McAlister said even if there is fair trade, success in the market also falls on mother nature. He’s hoping for the two to go hand-in-hand.

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