Utilizing Market Access Program (MAP) funds, the U.S Grains Council’s (USGC’s) Mexico office maintained a robust barley marketing program and active engagement with one of the largest importers of U.S. barley in Mexico throughout 2017. As a result of this investment, one of the largest brewing companies in Mexico sourced all of its malting barley needs from the United States that year, totaling 100,000 metric tons (4.6 million bushels) valued at $27 million.
The Council maintains regular, direct contact with the company’s technical staff and the procurement team to keep them informed of U.S. barley crop outlook, barley varieties being produced, productivity and sustainability.
In 2017, key decision makers from the company traveled north to Montana in October on a Council-led team arranged to show firsthand how this top ingredient is grown and malted. The team witnessed how barley is grown and processed specifically for their company by visiting the University of Montana’s barley research program, the Northern Seed research center, the Malteurop malting facility and with local barley farmers. Montana Secretary of Agriculture Ben Thomas also met with the group to thank representatives for their business and discuss concerns related to the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), without which this trading relationship that would not be possible.
This type of continued engagement and promotion allows the Council to defend sales against European competition and continue to favor the Montana barley industry.
The Council invested $55,000 of MAP funds in the barley program in 2017, with sales from the company valued at $27 million and a return on investment (ROI) of $490 per $1 of MAP funds invested.
About the U.S. Grains Council
The U.S. Grains Council develops export markets for U.S. barley, corn, sorghum and related products including distiller’s dried grains with solubles (DDGS) and ethanol. With full-time presence in 13 key markets and representatives in an additional 15 locations, the Council operates programs in more than 50 countries and the European Union. The Council believes exports are vital to global economic development and to U.S. agriculture’s profitability. Detailed information about the Council and its programs is online at www.grains.org.