A team representing the next generation of Chinese buyers of U.S. sorghum is traveling through Texas and Kansas this week to gain a better understanding of this year’s sorghum crop conditions and purchasing potential.
China is a complex but influential market for U.S. grains and the products made with them. Below is a Q & A with U.S. Grains Council (USGC) China Director Bryan Lohmar on his offices' work, what is happening on current issues and the long-term future for the partnership between U.S. farmers and Chinese importers.
Joy Jin Zhang, USGC Beijing office and program manager, will leave U.S. Grains Council (USGC) this week after nearly 17 years of service to the organization.
Zhang started with the Council in August 2000 as secretary. She advanced to administrative secretary then to her current position as office and program manager. In her current position, Joy manages key components of the Council’s Beijing office as well as coordinating policy programs and travel and itineraries for trade programs.
U.S. sorghum exports to China are expected to reach more than 3 million tons in September-August 2013/14, approaching $1 million in value, compared to exports of 3,376 MT the previous year. Building demand for U.S. sorghum was attractive as sorghum is not subject to a tariff rate quota restriction in China, the way corn is. Starting in 2012, the USGC used MAP and FMD funds to assess potential demand.
The dynamic evolution of China's economy is leading to an increased demand for imports, particularly with a growing, affluent population and 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 myriad opportunities for exporting the feed grains necessary for expanded meat production.
The U.S. Grains Council has been on the leading edge of organizations working with the Chinese government to meet these demands.
By: Jason Yan, U.S. Grains Council Technical Program Director in China
Swine production in China is both growing and rapidly consolidating into large operations. The U.S. Grains Council supports the continued expansion of large swine operations in China because growth of a modern livestock sector in China will not only improve efficiency and food safety, but also increase feed grain utilization as many smaller operations use substandard feeds.
With the Farm Bill passed and the Market Access Program (MAP) and Foreign Market Development program (FMD) reauthorized at current levels, we pause to remember why the proven partnership between USDA and the U.S. Grains Council is so important.
The dynamic of trade is changing in China as the country looks toward expanding sources of grain to supply chain, food security and meet a growing demand for high-protein products for its rapidly expanding middle class.
- World’s 2nd largest corn producer and consumer.
- World’s largest swine, aqua, and egg producer, 2nd largest poultry meat and growing dairy and beef producer.
- World’s largest sorghum and DDGS importer in recent years, but imports are declining due to protectionist policies.
- Population: 1.374 billion
- Population growth: 0.43%
- Urban %: 55.6%
- Urban growth: 3.05%
- GDP: $19.39 trillion
- GDP growth: 6.9%
- GDP per capita: $14,100
- Economic growth slowing but
The USGC China office is located in Beijing and has been operational for more than 30 years. The office is focused on collaborating with partners including private industry, state owned enterprises and government agencies.