USGC Starts WASDE Seminar Series For South Asian Customers

Recognizing a need for timely information on markets and prices, the U.S. Grains Council (USGC) started a monthly webinar series for customers in Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. The consistent engagement through this platform fosters better understanding of supply and demand factors and lays the foundation for future market development in South Asia.

“This is a direct way to engage with buyers in our region,” said Alejandra Danielson Castillo, USGC director in South Asia. “We have kept this series of webinars purposefully small and focused on South Asia. This intimate setting is creating good relationships and trust in a region with significant potential for U.S. exports of coarse grains and co-products.”

The webinars are focused on breaking down the monthly World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) report published by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). The seminars interpret the data in the WASDE report and offer explanations about the incoming U.S. crop and implications for the global market, especially for South Asia. Additional commentary includes how this information could influence distiller’s dried grains with solubles (DDGS) supply and pricing and potential opportunities or challenges in the container freight market.

“Our contacts have expressed that this information is timely, concise and provides good analysis of the supply and demand, climate and market conditions,” Danielson Castillo said. “This information directly affects and influences their buying decisions.”

The Council has conducted three of these monthly updates and plans to continue doing so in the day or two following the WASDE report’s publication. Participants from all five countries in the South Asian region are invited to the monthly webinar, and each country is usually represented by 10 to 20 individuals.

The South Asia region is one of the fast-growing in the world by economic measures and is inhabited by more than 25 percent of the global population, resulting in growing demand for animal feed to support the livestock and poultry sectors. Programs like this webinar series are opportunities to connect with key stakeholders, lending credibility to the Council’s expertise and building rapport with buyers in the region, who are learning directly they can come to the Council with questions on pricing, market conditions, logistics and nutrition.

“Prior to COVID-19, the Council maintained regular engagement with these stakeholders through in-person conferences, but even that contact was limited to every few months,” Danielson Castillo said. “The webinar series allows for consistent outreach that will lead to more contacts and partnerships as travel restrictions are lifted at some point in the future.”

Learn more about the Council’s work in South Asia.