News & Events
The U.S. Grains Council is working with USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service, Growth Energy and the Renewable Fuels Association to assess how best to promote ethanol exports during market development programs overseas.
Earlier this year, USDA announced ethanol could be marketed under Market Access Program funding.
USGC Manager of Ethanol Export Programs Ashley Kongs recently spoke about the Council’s work to assess new markets for ethanol in an audio interview.
This week’s U.S. Grains Council Chart of the Week illustrates that despite declining corn prices in the United States, corn prices in China continue to rise. Following years of increasing corn production, China has an abundant supply of corn available. However, transportation costs from production areas to areas that use corn make corn in China more expensive than corn imported from the United States. According to the chart, corn in China is selling corn at almost $155 more per ton than corn imported from the United States would cost.
Disruptions in U.S. corn and distiller’s dried grains with solubles (DDGS) to China have focused attention on the uncertainties surrounding the enormous potential of the world’s largest emerging market. The U.S. Grains Council devoted extensive attention to China and related trade issues at its winter annual meeting this past February in Long Beach, California, and it will continue the discussion at its upcoming summer annual meeting.
China’s new inspection and permit regime for U.S. distiller’s dried grains with solubles (DDGS) has created increased interest for DDGS in other markets around the world. Contracts continue to be written and DDGS continue to be shipped to China. However, with the new uncertainty and disruption in trade with China, bargain hunters elsewhere are sensing opportunity.
In June, traders received word of significant new restrictions on imports of distiller’s dried grains with solubles (DDGS) into China. While a formal statement from the government in China was not forthcoming, conversations with officials in China indicated that China would begin to more strictly test incoming shipments for the presence of biotech events not yet approved in China. It was also reported that China was considering a moratorium on new DDGS import permits, although existing permits would continue to be valid.
The rapid growth within China’s economy is leading to an increased demand for imports, particularly with the growing, affluent Chinese population and the corresponding demand for more protein-rich diets. With a population of 1.3 billion, and expectations to reach 1.4 billion by 2030, even a small shift in food trends can cause tremendous opportunities for the feed grains necessary for expanding meat production from backyard to commercial operations. For example, China is already the largest swine producer and consumer, accounting for half the world’s pig population.
The import situation in China continues to evolve for distiller’s dried grains with solubles (DDGS) as traders learn to navigate the changing regulatory environment. Existing import permits continue to be valid, contracts are still being written, and DDGS continue to arrive in China, where they are subject to inspection. Shipments that pass inspection continue to enter China.
More than 300 participants crowded the U.S. Grain and Oilseed Market and Trade Forum, held last week in Beijing, to assess the evolving role of trade in meeting China’s strategic food security objectives. Iowa producers Kevin Ross and James Grief presented on the U.S. producers’ perspective and current crop conditions at the Forum.
By: Kevin Roepke, U.S. Grains Council Director of Trade Development in China
The situation with U.S. distiller’s dried grains with solubles (DDGS) imports to China continues to evolve on a daily basis. Recent conversations between the U.S. Grains Council and the China Inspection and Quarantine Service suggest a more pro-active stance on the part of CIQ for resolving the status of approximately 90,000 metric tons of U.S. DDGS stranded in Shanghai.