USGC Welcomes Luis Bustamante to Western Hemisphere Office

Panama office

Please join the U.S. Grains Council (USGC) in welcoming Luis Bustamante to its Western Hemisphere office, located in Panama City.

Bustamante joins the Council as the Western Hemisphere’s regional marketing specialist. In this capacity, he will work to plan, coordinate and execute USGC programs that relate to marketing, trade servicing and local government relations.

Prior to the Council, Bustamante was a managing director for a Colombian grain trading company.

Video: USGC Chairman Reflects On Cuba Agriculture Learning Journey

U.S. Grains Council (USGC) Chairman Ron Gray, a farmer from Illinois, and USGC Regional Director of the Western Hemisphere Marri Carrow returned last week from an agriculture industry mission to learn about and engage with the Cuban government and people.   

Following the trip, Gray reflected on the experience and the work still to be done in a video interview.

Bringing the Corn Harvest Quality Report to The Caribbean Region

Dominican Republic

By: Manuel Sanchez, U.S. Grains Council Manager of Global Trade

The U.S. Grains Council (USGC) has a vital interest in the Western Hemisphere region, including the Caribbean. U.S. coarse grains and co-products have a natural market advantage in the region, although South American products have made inroads in recent years.

One such market is the Dominican Republic. Located only 800 miles (1,293 kilometers) away from the U.S. coast, it is a corn deficit country, importing 1.2 million metric tons (47 million bushels) annually.

USGC Explores Cuban Market On Industry Learning Journey


Although most U.S. trade with Cuba has been severely restricted since the 1960s, Cuba does buy limited amounts of agricultural products from the United States, including corn and distiller’s dried grains with solubles (DDGS). The recent decision by the Obama Administration to move toward normalized relations has prompted many in the agriculture sector, including the U.S. Grains Council (USGC), to explore next steps in fully reopening this next-door market.

Colombia: A Growing U.S. Corn Market With Potential for More

Colombia post-costa rica

By: Javier Chavez, U.S. Grains Council Marketing Specialist in Mexico

“We need more U.S. corn” was the greeting a U.S. Grains Council-escorted team received from Eudoro Acebedo, a Colombian poultry producer.

As a growing country that is experiencing dietary shifts toward higher-value calories, Colombians are poised to eat more meat, eggs and dairy. However, the mountainous country cannot produce enough grain to meet it needs. This presents the opportunity for export growth in coarse grains and co-products.

Building on Record Year Imports, USGC Corn Harvest Report Perfectly Timed in Peru

Peru has started the year with surging U.S. sales, filling its import quota for U.S. corn of 709,260 metric tons (27.9 million bushels) in the first seven days of the year. In the 2013/2014 marketing year, Peru finished as the eighth-largest U.S. corn export destination, setting an historic record of more than 1.2 million tons (47 million bushels) imported. And, if the anticipated accumulated exports to Peru are realized, within the first 5 months of the 2014/2015 marketing year, it will have already exceeded the total imports of the 2013/2014 marketing year.

Latin American Demand Estimated at a Quarter of World Corn Market in 2014/2015

latin america corn

This week’s U.S. Grains Council’s (USGC) Chart of Note illustrates the importance of the top four Latin American corn importers - Mexico, Colombia, Venezuela and Peru - in the world corn market this marketing year in comparison to expected top 10 markets.

The top four corn importing countries in Latin America are estimated to make up more than a quarter of the world market for corn this year. In fact, combined they are expected to import more corn from the world than Japan, which is currently the top destination for U.S. corn.

U.S. Grains Council Bids Farewell to Cesar Diaz

Please join the U.S. Grains Council (USGC) in bidding farewell to Cesar Diaz, who is leaving the Council to pursue new opportunities. 

Diaz served as the Council’s marketing specialist in the Western Hemisphere for more than two years. In this capacity, he provided support to the regional director and allowed the Council to provide additional depth and follow-up to ongoing marketing programs in the region.

His last day will be Friday, Jan. 30. 


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