2014 Year In Review

Global Awareness, Global Connections.

The U.S. Grains Council tailors its efforts to each region, each nation and each situation to help develop export markets for U.S. coarse grains and related co-products. It’s this global awareness and the Council’s global connections that make export growth happen and that inspired our theme for this year, Global Awareness, Global Connections.

From the soaring sales of U.S. sorghum to China to launching the Tanzanian Food For Progress program to trade policy talks to Export Exchange 2014, the Council’s engagement has:

  • promoted food security and economic growth;
  • grown the value of trade;
  • nurtured reliable trade policies; and
  • added valuable expertise.

The Council welcomes you to explore its 2014 Year In Review materials available on this site, including our market profiles, highlights on our work in more than 20 countries and video updates on our key successes. Please also download the poster-sized version of our report and keep it handy for reference in the coming year.

We sincerely appreciate the support of our members and the coarse grains industry and look forward to more successes in the coming year!

Member Letter

To U.S. Grains Council members:

Since its founding 54 years ago, the U.S. Grains Council has recognized that each region and each nation where we work has a unique set of circumstances in which our expertise can help solve problems and improve lives. This global awareness and the development of individually-tailored demand-building initiatives has helped the Council build an incredible network of global connections.

Utilizing those connections during the challenging years for trade servicing, confidence building and promoting pro-trade policies helped lay the groundwork for turning back-to-back record harvests and more competitive pricing into record U.S. ag exports in 2014.

The efforts of our staff, consultants and member-leaders in 2014 highlight so much of what is good about the Council’s work, and so much of why we’ve been successful in becoming a trusted bridge between international customers and U.S. farmers and agribusinesses.

Export Exchange 2014 – a hallmark Council program, put on in partnership with the Renewable Fuels Association – brought together buyers from around the world to build relationships with U.S. exporters and see first-hand the quality of the record U.S. crop.

We began a new Food for Progress program in Tanzania, aiming to provide a quality protein source for the growing middle class in the region.

We were thrilled to see our work bear fruit when Taiwan’s Ministry of Health and Welfare approved a ready-to-eat barley-rice product, and China imported more than 6.4 million metric tons of U.S. sorghum in 2014.

The Council also worked with partners to begin assessing how best to promote U.S. ethanol in the global marketplace, and we helped the industry manage the short-term impact of biotech-related market disruptions while continuing to push for a long-term solution on asynchronous approvals and trade-enabling policies on the low-level presence of biotech events.

These are exciting and important projects that are made possible by our vibrant, active membership base, volunteer leaders from all sectors of agriculture and our dedicated global staff. We thank you and hope you are able to learn from, engage with and even – for the first time – display this annual report.

Ron Gray

Thomas Sleight
President & CEO

2013/2014 Board of Directors Front row, from left: Past Chairman, Julius Schaaf, Iowa Corn Promotion Board; Vice Chairman, Alan Tiemann, Nebraska Corn Board; Chairman, Ron Gray, Illinois Corn Marketing Board; Secretary/Treasurer Chip Councell, Maryland Grain Producers Utilization Board; President and CEO, Thomas Sleight, U.S. Grains Council. Back row, from left: At-Large Director, Deb Keller, Iowa Corn Promotion Board; At-Large Director, Charles Ring, Texas Corn Producers Board; Agribusiness Sector Director, Steve Brody, DuPont Pioneer; At-Large Director, Jim Stuever, Missouri Corn Merchandising Council; State Checkoff Sector Director, Craig Floss, Iowa Corn Promotion Board; Barley Sector Director, Mark Seastrand, North Dakota Barley Council; Sorghum Sector Director, Bill Kubecka, United Sorghum Checkoff Program; Corn Sector Director, Dick Gallagher, Iowa Corn Promotion Board; At-Large Director, Jim Tobin, Monsanto Company.


Explore other reports