News & Events
U.S. farmers, agribusinesses and trade organizations are - and must continue to be - actively engaged in the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). U.S. Grains Council (USGC) President and Chief Executive Officer Tom Sleight conveyed that call to action and offered a strong show of support for the long-standing partnership between U.S. and Mexican agriculture during recent remarks to the Mexican feed industry.
Strong educational programming is a critical element of the U.S. Grains Council (USGC) strategy to build global demand for U.S. corn, sorghum, barley and value-added products. As part of that effort, USGC recently offered trade schools in three cities across Colombia to provide a farmer-to-final product perspective on U.S. grains.
More than 120 attendees took part in the seminars, gaining insights from farmers, traders and USGC staff on topics including hedging, international freights and consolidation of purchasing pools.
Free trade agreements help provide market access for some of the largest purchasers of U.S. grains and for some smaller but steady buyers. Israel, as the first market with which the United States signed a free trade agreement, is a good example.
U.S. agricultural exports to Mexico have quintupled since the ink dried on the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) more than 20 years ago. And Mexico’s animal agriculture and feed manufacturing industries want to keep buying even more U.S. corn, sorghum, distiller’s dried grains with solubles (DDGS) and other products, according to a team of Mexican grain buyers, livestock and feed processing representatives who traveled to Nebraska and Washington, D.C., this week.
Recent events in foreign policy and the ongoing conversation about the value of U.S. trade agreements have put a spotlight on South Korea as a close U.S. ally and an important customer for U.S. products, including grains.
South Korea is now the fifth largest market for U.S. agricultural exports, totaling $6.2 billion in purchases in 2016. The country was the fourth largest importer of both U.S. corn and distiller's dried grains with solubles (DDGS) as well as the seventh largest importer of U.S. barley in the 2015/2016 marketing year.
Washington, D.C. - A statement from U.S. Grains Council President and CEO Tom Sleight:
"We are shocked and distressed to see news reports that the Trump Administration is considering an executive order to withdraw the United States from the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).
"Mexico and Canada are among our largest and most loyal grain export markets, and our organization has worked closely with partners in both countries for more than 30 years.
“The U.S.-Peru Trade Promotion Agreement has served to generate a continuing, symbiotic trade relationship between the United States and Peru that shows no signs of diminishing.”
U.S. exports of feed grains in all forms increased 33 percent year-over-year in the first six months of the 2016/2017 marketing year, according to recently published trade data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and analysis by the U.S. Grains Council (USGC).
That data showed the United States exported more than 56.6 million metric tons of feed grains in all forms - a calculation that measures grain products in corn equivalent - from September 2016 to February 2017, compared to 42.5 million tons during the same time the prior marketing year.
U.S. Grains Council (USGC) programming helped one poultry producer in Tanzania shift her burgeoning poultry business into a full-blown brand of frozen chicken.