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United Grain Stuck in Middle of Tariff Conflict

Grain elevator based in Vancouver worries about long-term implications of trade war

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United Grain, a subsidiary of Japanese conglomerate Mitsui & Co. based in Vancouver, WA, operates the largest grain elevator on the West Coast. It has 100 local employees and facilities elsewhere across the West. The Vancouver grain terminal was built in 1935 and nearly doubled in capacity in 2011.

According to The Columbian, at first, United Grain officials had been hopeful that timing on the trade dispute would be in their favor. The timing hasn’t worked out, however.

Spokesmen for the company are concerned about the short- and long-term implications of a prolonged stalemate affecting soybeans.

"We don’t know if there’s a long-term detriment … we’re certain that it won’t just switch back immediately in complete full force," Gary Williams, United Grain’s vice president of marketing and business development told The Columbian. "But what does that mean for intermediate or long-term? I don’t think anyone is willing to put a forecast on that.”

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