The European Union threatened on Wednesday to impose duties on U.S. bourbon, peanut butter, cranberries and orange juice if President Donald Trump imposes tariffs on steel and aluminum.
EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom also said Brussels would take the case to the World Trade Organization and coordinate with other trade partners against the proposed U.S. tariffs.
She confirmed that the EU has prepared a provisional list of U.S. products that would see higher tariffs in Europe if Trump moves ahead with the tariffs. According to media reports, the EU's tariffs could amount to 2.83 billion euros ($3.52 billion).
"Certain types of bourbon is indeed on the list as is other items, such as peanut butter and cranberries, orange juice, etc.," she said, adding that "very soon" the list will be made public.
In an interview Wednesday on CNBC, U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross played down the impact of the tariffs. "We're not trying to blow up the world," he said.
Malmstrom said the EU was getting ready to put safeguard measures in place to prevent metal flooding in the EU, as a result of the tariffs.
"There are indications that President Trump, very soon, in the coming days, we don't know for sure, may sign off a decision on import tariffs of 25 percent on steel and 10 percent on aluminum, which he announced on the March 1," Malmstrom said.
"This is done under something that's called Section 232, which refers to internal or national security. We have serious doubts about that justification, we cannot see how the European Union's friends and allies in NATO can be a threat to national security in the U.S. We find that assumption deeply unjust," she added.