Trade

Foreign Company Receives Fourth Bailout From Trump

JM Ashby
Written by JM Ashby

Last week we learned that a Brazilian-owned meatpacking company has received at least three bailouts from the Trump regime totaling over $60 million, but they've reportedly received another.

The New York Daily News -- which first reported the existence of the company's first three bailouts -- now reports that they received a fourth bailout of $2 million on Friday.

Just one day after the Daily News reported the Trump administration had doled out millions of dollars intended to benefit American farmers to JBS USA — owned by Joesley and Wesley Batista who both admitted to bribing hundreds of South American officials — the government upped the company’s take to $64.4 million, new purchase records reveal. [...]

A spokesman for the Agriculture Department declined to comment beyond a statement issued last week saying it doesn’t matter “who the vendor is” because “the products purchased are grown in the U.S. and benefit U.S. farmers.” [...]

“Our sole intent for participating is to support U.S. producer prices and help our American producer partners,” [a JBS spokesman] said. “This is not a bailout. We are paid for the work of our team members in the plant and the products we produce, which are used to support important federal feeding programs that assist U.S. citizens.”

The Agriculture Department's response is only partially true. The meat acquired by JBS does come from livestock raised in the United States as far as we know (I'm half expecting another shoe to drop here), but farmers do not see another dime after the livestock has already changed hands. JBS will keep the $64 million.

And as we discussed last week, JBS is doing quite well for itself. The Brazilian-owned company saw its exports to China increase by 24 percent after Trump launched a trade war that prompted the Chinese government to impose retaliatory tariffs on American agriculture.

Trump bailout program is suppose to help farmers that are struggling, not foreign-owned businesses that are thriving.

  • muselet

    The similarity of language coming from the Department of Agriculture and JBS is striking. I’m not churlish enough to suggest coordination or something equally unseemly, but the way each ducks the question of whether the company should even be eligible for payment is remarkable.

    In a sane universe—even in this universe, up until recently—things like this would not happen.

    –alopecia

  • Aynwrong

    Hey Trump voting farmers, where’s your MAGA now?