November 1, 2016

North African Buying Team Visits Nebraska to See Corn Industry Firsthand

The U.S. Grains Council’s Export Exchange conference just wrapped up in Detroit, Michigan, and overseas grain buyers from the North African countries of Morocco and Tunisia have now seen corn harvest and ethanol production for themselves after making a pre-conference stop in Nebraska.

International trade plays a key role in the success of our industry. With a record corn harvest expected for 2016, it is critically important that there are markets for our corn and value-added corn products. U.S. Grains Council’s (USGC) Export Exchange conference offers the perfect opportunity to bring international trade teams to Nebraska, and across the U.S., so they can see our corn supply and quality for themselves.

The team, consisting of representatives from major North African corn importers and feed companies, had the opportunity to visit Central Plains Milling in Howells to learn about the U.S. feed industry, before heading to Green Plains trading floor in Omaha. They also had the opportunity to tour the Green Plains production plant in Shenandoah, Iowa to see ethanol and distillers grain production. The team capped their Nebraska visit by experiencing corn harvest firsthand at Alan Tiemann’s farm by Seward.

Tiemann, at-large director on the Nebraska Corn Board and past-chair of the USGC said, “The grain buyers from North Africa were extremely impressed with the quality of our corn and corn products and were appreciative of their time in Nebraska.”

“The fact is, every farmer and rancher in Nebraska benefits from exports, even if they don’t personally export anything. Inviting grain buyers from Morocco, Tunisia and other places around the world to Nebraska is a vital step in establishing relationships and building new export markets with international trade partners,” added Tiemann.

Held every other year by the USGC and the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA), Export Exchange brings together international buyers with U.S. sellers of corn, sorghum, barley, distiller’s dried grains with solubles (DDGS), corn gluten meal and corn gluten feed. The conference highlights the importance of strong trade policy and market development to U.S. agriculture. The USGC in partnership with Nebraska Corn Board works in more than 50 countries and the European Union to market U.S. grains and their related products and build long-term demand from loyal customers.

Boone McAfee, Nebraska Corn Board’s director of research and coordinator for this team, noted, “Strengthening the bonds between Nebraska suppliers and our international trade partners is essential. The connections made during their visit to Nebraska, in addition to their time at US Grains Council’s Export Exchange Conference, will help propel a positive trade partnership for current and future trade opportunities.”

Photos available (Click here).

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