Conferences Highlight U.S. Corn, Sorghum and Co-Products To EMEA Buyers

This week, the U.S. Grains Council’s (USGC’s) Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) regional office wrapped up two buyers and sellers conferences – in Dakar, Senegal, then in Lisbon, Portugal. Both conferences welcomed attendees from Europe (Spain, Portugal, United Kingdom, Ireland and Turkey), the Middle East (Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Jordan, United Arab Emirates, Israel and Egypt), and from North Africa (Tunisia, Morocco and Algeria), as well as West and East Africa (Senegal, Ivory Coast, Cameroon, Mali, Burkina Faso, Gambia, Nigeria, Ghana, Sierra Leone and Kenya).

Both events gathered more than 75 grains importers, feed manufacturers and end users where they had the chance to learn more from U.S. farmers and speakers who shared a number of trade and technical topics including global and U.S. coarse grains supply and demand; storage management; corn co-products cost and availability; transportation and ocean freight; the value of distiller’s dried grains with solubles (DDGS) in feed formulations; and commercial risk management. U.S. corn and co-products promotion was highlighted, as U.S. corn exports to the region face tough competition from Black Sea and South American exporters.

“In an effort to target Sub-Saharan African (SSA) markets, the Council welcomed its counterparts from North, West and East Africa to attend the third edition of the Buyers and Sellers Conference in Dakar, Senegal, to introduce U.S. farmers and agribusinesses to prospective importers in the SSA area,” said Ramy H. Taieb, USGC’s EMEA regional director. “2021 saw the first ever sales of U.S. DDGS to Senegal, and African buyers are eager to develop and strengthen their relationships with the U.S. industry. By giving individual attention to the SSA market, there will be a greater opportunity for interaction between U.S. sellers and regional buyers,” Taieb said.

To enhance and promote the quality and value of U.S. corn and its co-products to those interested in buying, the Council also hosted one-on-one meetings between U.S. agribusinesses and key importers and feed millers in the region.

The buyers and sellers’ conferences were a great opportunity for the Council to continue expanding its influence and increasing its effectiveness in improving imports of U.S. corn, sorghum and co-products into the EMEA region. The Tunis office has plans to make feed grains buyers aware of the financial benefits of U.S. corn and co-products as well as the nutritional value associated with U.S. commodities.

“The Buyers and Sellers Conference provides an ideal forum for continued relationship building among trading partners. The conference is held every two years and allows the Council to strengthen its ties with key stakeholders within the region,” Taieb said. “The event offered attendees a unique opportunity to meet, build relationships, enable trade and develop future markets.”