Agriculture Dept. launches 2nd round of payments to farmers

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WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump has authorized the Agriculture Department to launch the second and final round of $11 billion in trade mitigation payments to farmers hard hit by tariffs.

In a tweet on Monday, Trump said he is fulfilling a promise to protect farmers against “unjustified trade retaliation by foreign nations.”

The Trump administration in July announced it would provide up to $12 billion to offset losses from Trump’s trade disputes with China and other countries.

The first round of checks went out in September.

In total, producers of almonds, corn, cotton, dairy, hogs, sorghum, soybeans, fresh sweet cherries and wheat will receive roughly $9.5 billion. Soybean farmers will get the largest share.

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Roughly $1.2 billion is earmarked for a food purchase and distribution program and $200 million to promote trade.

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