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“Sugar policy good for consumers, farmers”

Philip Tiedtke or Winter Park, Florida, wrote a letter-to-the-editor responding to a recent anti-sugar program column inked by Scott Maxwell in the Orlando Sentinel asserting that “Sugar policy good for consumers, farmers.” 

The letter was published by the Sentinel yesterday…

Columnist Scott Maxwell misses the main reason that Republicans and Democrats support strong sugar policy: It works for American consumers and farmers (“Sugar giveaways enrich politicians, cost you plenty, Orlando Sentinel, Wednesday).

Sugar prices have been steady and affordable for decades. Today the price of sugar in the U.S. is among the lowest of any developed country in the world.

The U.S. is the largest sugar importer in the world, allowing sugar from nearly 40 developing countries into our market. Unfortunately, every country offers some type of support to its farmers. Allowing heavily subsidized foreign sugar to drive American farmers out of business has been rightly rejected by both House and Senate.

Those who don’t like it are the big food companies, which figure they can get subsidized world sugar even cheaper if we farmers go bust. They have mounted a brilliant public-relations campaign against us.

I will admit that the column’s headline — “Sugar giveaways” — is true. Sugar prices in the U.S. are so affordable that restaurants that charge two bucks for a thin slice of cheese on a burger offer sugar for free.