They want cherries
Saturday, July 28, 2012View full version
For some cherry growers in North Central Washington, it’s been a sadly soggy and breezy month. The fortunate growers, however, may see their produce satisfy cherry hunger around the world, most recently in South Korea.
That’s significant, because we grow the best sweet cherries in the world and South Koreans want them, but heretofore were priced out of the market by protectionist policy and high tariffs. That ended this year as the newly approved free trade agreement went into effect. A 24 percent tariff disappeared and cherry shipments to South Korea doubled, from 171,000 boxes last year to 368,000 this year, with a month to go in the season. South Koreans who couldn’t afford $13 a pound for Bings and Rainiers suddenly saw them within their financial reach.
So it goes with free trade. It’s a sweet deal for South Korean consumers, no longer penalized for their desires, and Washington exporters, who absent barriers usually find willing customers. We could do with more of this.
This is the opinion of The Wenatchee World and its Editorial Board: Publisher Rufus Woods, Editor Cal FitzSimmons and Editorial Page Editor Tracy Warner.