News & Events
Farmers currently participating in the U.S. Grains Council’s (USGC) Grain Export Mission (GEM) are taking part in a unique opportunity to see the global market in which they work from the eyes of both customers and competitors.
Two groups of mission participants departed early this week for South America, each visiting a competitor country and a U.S. customer country. GEM participants are observing local conditions, trade opportunities and constraints, as well as sharing with foreign contacts insights about producing coarse grains in the United States.
The latest USDA World Agriculture Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) report released Oct. 11 is still predicting a record corn crop, with expected yields up 0.16 metric tons per hectare (2.5 bushels per acre) to a total of 10.9 tons per hectare (174.2 bushels per acre).
By: Javier Chavez, U.S. Grains Council Marketing Specialist in Mexico
Latin America’s primary use of barley is in the brewing sector, either as malt or malting barley. To strengthen this growing sector’s ties with U.S. barley producers and malt exporters, the U.S. Grains Council recently escorted two teams from Latin America and Mexico to key U.S. barley growing areas including Colorado, Montana and North Dakota.
By: Tommy Hamamoto, U.S. Grains Council Director in Japan
Japan is an important market for U.S. food barley, which is used in tea, liquor and cereal. In 2013, Japan nearly doubled imports of U.S. barley for food compared to 2012, in part due to promotional efforts by the U.S. Grains Council. In support of this effort, the Council hosted a Japanese food barley team composed of key buyers and end-users to the U.S. barley belt from July 29 to Aug. 6.
Negotiators for the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) convened this week in Vietnam with a focus on resolving technical issues prior to next week’s TPP Ministerial meeting in Singapore. Floyd Gaibler, U.S. Grain Council director of trade policy and biotechnology, was in Vietnam for industry meetings with chief negotiators for several countries including Vietnam, New Zealand, Canada, Japan and Mexico.
“The sense of urgency is universal,” Gaibler said. “Negotiators from all countries are well aware of the clock. But at the same time, all of them recognize that there are some very difficult political decisions at stake, and that these will have to be resolved at the Ministerial level, or even higher.”
Each year, Israel imports between 2.4 and 2.5 million metric tons of feed grains. The product mix of corn, feed wheat, barley, sorghum, oats and rye changes year-to-year, depending on prices for delivery to Israeli ports from various points of origin in the region.
In recent years, Ukraine and Russia – among other Black Sea sources – have dominated the Israeli market for corn, feed wheat and barley due to proximity and resulting freight advantage over the United States and South America.
According to USDA FAS, Taiwan's outstanding sales and accumulated exports of U.S. barley as of April 17 have increased almost 174 percent this marketing year (June1-May 31), over the same period last year. One promising use of U.S. barley in Taiwan is in food products. U.S. barley has been gaining popularity in Taiwan since U.S. research discovered – and the U.S. Grains Council began promoting – the health benefits of high beta-glucan U.S. barley, which has heart-healthy properties, including reduced cholesterol. As the Taiwanese general public continues to grow more health conscious, this increase in imports will likely continue and drive future market growth.
In an important win for U.S. barley producers, Japan has indicated that in the next year it will allow heart healthy labeling of food products containing high beta-glucan barley. U.S. research findings have documented heart-healthy attributes of high beta-glucan barley -- such as reduced cholesterol and lowering the risk of coronary heart disease -- and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has recognized these claims since 2006.
The U.S. Grains Council was among more than 300 exhibitors at the recently concluded Taipei International Bakery Show in Taiwan. The Council promoted U.S. beta-glucan barley which, according to U.S. research, has heart-healthy properties to include reducing cholesterol and the risk of coronary heart disease.
By: Clover Chang, U.S. Grains Council Director in Taiwan
With a stable but rapidly aging population in Taiwan, healthy living is becoming increasingly important. This creates an opportunity for U.S. barley because according to U.S. research, beta-glucan found in U.S. barley has heart healthy properties, such as reducing cholesterol.