I bet you thought that Christmas trees were the only targets of the USDA. Not even close!
Their “fees” aka taxes according to Heritage extend to –
The marketing assessments, such as the Christmas tree fee, are far from harmless. They cost growers and consumers money, and skirt constitutional provisions that only Congress has the power to tax, but they also violate basic principles of free speech, making some producers pay to communicate messages against their will.
Among the commodities subject to these fees:
- Beef: $1 per head of cattle, totaling $80 million annually;
- Blueberries: $12 per ton;
- Cotton: $1 per bale of cotton handled;
- Dairy products: 15-cent-per-hundredweight assessment on all milk produced in the contiguous 48 states;
- Eggs: 10 cents per 30-dozen cases of eggs sold, bringing in $18 million annually;
- Fluid milk: 20-cent-per-hundredweight assessment;
- Hass avocados: 2.5 cents per pound, bringing in almost $30 million;
- Honey packers and importers: 1 cent per pound, totaling $5 million;
- Lamb: $0.005 per pound of live lambs sold, with $2 million raised each year;
- Mangos: $0.005 per pound, raising $4.3 million;
- Mushrooms: 0.005 cents per pound, totaling over $4 million in revenue;
- Peanuts: 1 percent of the total value of all farmers stock peanuts, raising $8 million;
- Popcorn: 6 cents per hundredweight, raising some $1 million;
- Pork: 0.25 percent of market value, raising $3.8 million;
- Potatoes: 3 cents per hundredweight, totaling about $12 million;
- Soybeans: 0.5 percent of the net market price of the soybeans purchased, averaging $55–60 million per year;
- Watermelons: 3 cents per hundredweight on domestic watermelons, and importers pay 6 cents per cwt, bringing in some $2.8 million.