News & Events
"The U.S. Grains Council remembers the 1960 'hog lift' to Japan as our founding event," said Council President and CEO Tom Sleight, "and still today, anything that hurts hogs hurts many of our oldest and best customers around the world. The current swine epidemic is a serious matter for many of them, and therefore for us."
Last week, officers of the U.S. Grains Council and National Corn Growers Association wrapped-up an almost two-week trip to Colombia and Mexico. They met with key customers and end-users who were excited host the joint-officers and discuss further deepening the already robust trade partnership with the United States.
Mexico is leading the world as the top U.S. corn export customer with accumulated exports of more than 5.7 million metric tons (224 million bushels) from Sept. 1, 2013, through March 27, 2014, an increase of 250 percent over the same time period last year. Additionally, Colombia is making a comeback as a regular buyer of U.S. corn, with accumulated exports totalling more than 1.7 million tons (66 million bushels) from Sept. 1, 2013, to March 27, 2014.
This year, Mexico is leading the world as the top U.S. corn export customer with accumulated exports of more than 5.5 million metric tons (216 million bushels) from Sept. 1, 2013, to March 20, 2014, an increase of 253 percent over the same time period last year. Additionally, Colombia is making a comeback as a regular buyer of U.S. corn, with accumulated exports totaling more than 1.5 million tons (59 million bushels) from Sept. 1, 2013, to March 20, 2014.
According to USDA's Export Sales Report, as of March 20, 2014, accumulated exports of U.S. corn to Mexico are 5.5 million metric tons (216.5 million bushels), more than 3.3 million tons (131 million bushels) greater than at the same time last year. For perspective, Mexico only imported 4.5 million tons (177 million bushels) of U.S. corn for the 2012/2013 marketing year than began on Sept. 1, 2012. This dramatic turnaround is due to an abundant U.S. corn crop harvested in 2013, which allowed for U.S. corn to be competitively priced in the export market.
"You can't argue with the numbers," said U.S. Grains Council Chairman Julius Schaaf. "Our next-door and nearby neighbors are among our best partners, and we are excited by new opportunities in both Colombia and Mexico."
Schaaf and the other Council officers are traveling to Latin America with the 2014 USGC-National Corn Growers Association Officers Mission. The officers will be meeting with leaders in the feed and livestock industries, U.S. embassy officials and other stakeholders in both Colombia and Mexico.
Mexico is the third-largest market for U.S. distiller's dried grains with solubles (DDGS) but its southern region is remains an underserved livestock sector growth potential for U.S. exports. The U.S. Grains Council is on the precipice of opening this market for U.S. grain exporters.
In 2012, the Council conducted an assessment of southern Mexico's potential to begin using DDGS to feed livestock.
This week's U.S. Grains Council Chart of the Week shows that U.S. exports and outstanding sales in the first several months of the current corn marketing year have more than doubled since the same time period of the previous year and have already exceeded the accumulated total sales of the 2012/2013 marketing year.
The newest addition to the U.S. Grains Council's international staff is Rolando Javier Chavez, who will join the Mexico program as a marketing specialist consultant based in Monterrey. Chavez brings to the Council 25 years of broad experience in the feed industry, including service as a plant manager, customer service specialist, information technology specialist and most recently as a commodities buyer and logistics manager.
This week's U.S. Grains Council Chart of the Week shows the change the change in imports of U.S. corn from 2012 to 2013 in 14 Latin American countries. According to the USDA, the Western Hemisphere's accumulated U.S. corn imports are more than 1.7 million metric tons (67 million bushels) ahead of last year at this same time. Mexico, the second-largest U.S. corn market, is the largest contributor to this market change, importing 1 million tons (39.4 million bushels) more than last year.
The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) came into effect Jan. 1, 1994, which makes Jan. 1, 2014, the 20th anniversary of the landmark trade agreement that has served as an example for many trade deals that followed.
In the years since NAFTA took effect, Mexico grew to become the second largest market for U.S. corn, the top market for U.S. sorghum and the premier market for distiller's dried grains with solubles (DDGS). Growth in demand for feed grains continues to be driven by a steady expansion in livestock and poultry production in the country.