Tuesday, February 14, 2012

We Should All Get Valentine's Day Cards from Big Sugar for the $4B We Paid Them in Higher Prices

In an article today on American.com today titled “Bitter Sweet: How Big Sugar Robs You,” Michael Wohlgenant and Vincent Smith provide some timely Valentine’s Day commentary and report that:

“For decades, sugar beet and sugar cane farmers and processors have been the beneficiaries of a sugar program that stealthily drives up sugar costs—and, consequently, the cost of that heart-shaped box of chocolates (see chart above of U.S. sugar prices vs. world prices). Over the past 30 years, the annual burden on U.S. consumers has averaged over $3 billion in higher food prices.”

On Valentine’s Day, it’s appropriate that Wohlgenant and Smith remind us that the “hand on your back pocket billfold today is not your sweetheart’s, it’s the sugar lobby’s,” which lifted almost $4 billion from American consumers last year, read more here at The Enterprise Blog.


At 2/14/2012 8:41 PM, Blogger FloridaSteve said...

I work for a mid-sized environmental engineering company that does work in the Fl Everglades / lower Lake Okeechobee basin. For more years than I care to mention I did work on behalf of everglade restoration (which is really just a bait and switch cover for increased water mgmt for Broward and Dade counties) AND compliance work on behalf of the sugar cane growers who populate the upper everglades and are subsidized by the same government trying to ostensibly save the everglades.

Yes I took the paycheck with my eyes wide open but I'm not at all proud of it. I've since moved on to water and sewer design. I feel a lot cleaner in that field.

At 2/14/2012 9:38 PM, Blogger Benjamin Cole said...

Tops to Florida Steve for funny commentary.

$3 billion, now $4 billion a year to sugar parasites?

Man, that's $100 billion in the last 30 years, and forget PV (present value).

This makes Solyndra look like a bunch of rank amateurs. You see, you gotta maneuver for permanent subsidies/protections/mandates, not a one-time shot.

Ethanol was subsidized and then mandated, so although it is inefficient greenie-weenie stuff, it survives. It has rural Congressmen (mostly GOP) and the USDA behind it, which means when our grandchildren have babies, those babies will drive cars that use ethanol when they grow up.

Sugar has a sweet deal--protection from offshore competition. The same protection that would be so evil it was used to protect Detroit.

So Detroit went into the toilet, and the sugar growers thrived. And Detroit had to build cars that use ethanol, whether consumers wanted that or not. Consumers have to buy ethanol gasoline, whether they want to or not.

And you do not have the right to buy cheap offshore sugar.

At 2/15/2012 9:59 AM, Blogger Ettubloge said...

It saved how many jobs and cost how many in related fields (like candy companies unable to afford the higher cost of local sugar) and other fields (due to siphoning private capital from higher uses)?

At 2/17/2012 11:19 PM, Blogger Robert said...

They drove up the price o sugar, so the food companies switched to high-fructose corn syrup (which is subsidized). Now they want to ban that because it is making people fat. These guys make hamsters look like slackers.


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