Steve Chapman on the Foolishness of Price Supports for Sugar

Life SaversIn 1990, Brach’s Confections Inc. threatened to
close a West Side factory that employed 1,100 people. The candy
maker said it would move abroad unless the federal government acted
to reduce the artificially inflated cost of sugar. Washington
ignored the threat, and Brach’s found ways to keep the plant going.
But in 2003, it closed the factory and sent much of the work to
Mexico. The reason for the move was a federal undertaking whose
entire purpose is to prop up the price of sugar for the benefit of
a small number of growers. It does so by restricting imports,
limiting how much farmers can plant and guaranteeing them a certain
price. These methods work: The price of sugar in this country is
usually double or triple the price in the rest of the world.

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from Hit & Run

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