Mexican tomato imports went up to ninety-three percent between the years 1992 and 1996. During this time, American production went down by twenty-one percent. This increase of supply resulted in a decrease of price from 0.79 dollars per kilogram to 0.63 dollars per kilogram by the year 1996, as per a 2003 research by Baylis.
Also, other than the investigation into dumping, American growers, especially those from Florida came up with several requests for trade protection from the US Congress and Administration. This also covered new rules for labels for tomatoes from Mexico, tomato quotas for the weekly administration, an increase in sanitary inspections, an investigation for safeguarding the trade and a new definition of the national industry.
Growers from Florida came up with two different claims in front of the USITC and Congress, both of which were rejected. With the failure in getting either of the Congress or USITC to act for the growers from Florida, they complained to the USDOC, who decided that Mexican growers were not selling at or above their fair market value.
This was a stepping stone in terms of the implementation of duties for dumping against Mexican growers. Subsequently, USDOC shared their report with the USITC, as per law, which also joined the hunt. The USITC voted four to one against the claim, deciding that tomatoes from Mexico were not the cause of any material harm to American growers in general, rather only the ones from Florida.
For international trade, American is only mindful of one facet i.e. the effects on domestic growers, because individual consumers’ losses due to trade limitations are little, so they probably will not lobby for opposition to trade restrictions. Trade policies are not about welfare optimization, but the effects of various policies on all parties concerned should be considered important. For tomatoes, the only solution appears to be an unbiased observer investigating the alleged dumping by Mexican growers, but due to Florida’s political might, this is not likely.