Southeast Asia Grain Conference Brings Buyers, U.S. Sellers Together

The 10th Annual Asia Grain Transportation Conference held this week brought together the region’s top buyers of oilseeds, coarse grains and co-products with several of the largest U.S. exporters.

The conference was organized by the U.S. Grains Council (USGC) and U.S. Soybean Export Council (USSEC) and offered both a robust agenda and outstanding networking opportunities for participants.

The 150 attendees benefited from a program that focused on how recent trends like weather problems, record production for oilseeds and grains, depressed freight rates and the strength of the U.S. dollar will impact the Southeast Asia region’s grain trade.

“The conference provided a platform for top-level decision makers to meet, interact and conduct business with exporters of U.S. coarse grains and co-products,” said USGC Regional Director for South and Southeast Asia Kevin Roepke. “In addition, the attendees gained an enhanced understanding of U.S. and global grain markets, grain trade and feed industry trends from the expert speakers who presented during the event.”

Southeast Asia has significant potential for increased exports with consumption of food growing at double-digit rates annually. For example, Vietnam sees itself as eventually surpassing China as the world’s largest per capita consumer of pork. Meanwhile, Malaysia, a predominately Muslim country, is one of the world’s highest per capita consumers of chicken.

However, while Southeast Asia’s appetite for meat continues to grow, the region’s ability to produce the coarse grains that are used to feed livestock is facing many challenges. From adverse weather to the lack of post-harvest infrastructure to shrinking arable land resources, the region’s grain farmers are unable to meet the local growing demand for coarse grains.

These combined factors offer significant growth opportunities for coarse grain and co-product exports to the region.

“To unlock these opportunities within my region, the Council is focusing on supplementing its robust technical servicing programs with an aggressive demand development portfolio,” Roepke said. “As the industry rapidly sophisticates and develops, we are looking towards developing a prescriptive approach that will create unique programs for each market.”

Click here to learn more about the Council’s presence in the Southeast Asia region.