Mixed Signals on Biotech from EU

Cindy Zimmerman

Mixed signals regarding biotech crops coming from the European Union last week have left representatives of the agriculture community shaking their heads. First the EU announced it would allow member nations to ban the import of food and feed containing biotech ingredients, and then a few days later announced the approval of 17 biotech traits for import. “I’m just characterizing …

AFBF, ASA, Audio, Biotech, Exports, International, NCGA

USTR Update at #Classic15

Cindy Zimmerman

U.S. Trade Representative Chief Agricultural Negotiator Darci Vetter updated farmer leaders and the media on trade issues at the 2015 Commodity Classic last week, particularly on the need for Trade Promotion Authority to move current negotiations forward. “There are groups on the right and on the left that would say that Trade Promotion Authority is not the way to go,” …

Audio, Commodity Classic, Exports, Government, Trade

Former Ag Secretaries Urge Congress to Pass TPA

Cindy Zimmerman

A bipartisan group of former U.S. Agriculture Secretaries, representing all past administrations since President Jimmy Carter, issued an open letter on Friday urging Congress to pass Trade Promotion Authority (TPA). The former secretaries note that TPA has been given to all previous presidents since Gerald Ford and is critical for successfully negotiating new trade partnerships that boost exports and create …

Exports, Government, Trade, USDA

Former USTR Talks Trade at Ethanol Conference

Cindy Zimmerman

Former U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk was the keynote speaker at the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) National Ethanol Conference this week where the theme was “Going Global” with an emphasis on exports. “I want to thank you for your very strong and vocal support for a very smart trade policy for our country over the years,” said Kirk, who served …

Audio, Ethanol, Exports, Trade

Agri-Pulse Open Mic with Phillip Seng

Leah Guffey

Agri-Pulse interviewed Philip Seng, President and CEO USMEF on Open Mic this week: International trade can be a “gold mine” for beef and pork producers as well as the grain growers they rely on for feed. However, U.S. red meat exports are challenged from lower domestic production and the rising value of the U.S. dollar. In this week’s Open Mic …

Agri-Pulse, Audio, Exports, Food, Markets, Meat

Ag Coalition for Cuba Launched

Cindy Zimmerman

More than 25 companies and organizations launched the U.S. Agriculture Coalition for Cuba (USACC) in Washington Thursday to liberalize trade and re-establish Cuba as a market for U.S. food and agriculture exports. Among the speakers who introduced the new coalition were a list of lawmakers from a variety of states, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, Missouri Governor Jay Nixon, and representatives …

Audio, Exports, Government, Rice, Trade, USDA

Corn Growers Pleased with Chinese Approval for Imports

Cindy Zimmerman

Syngenta officially announced this week that Chinese regulatory officials have approved for the Agrisure Viptera® trait (event MIR162) formally granting import approval. The approval covers corn grain and processing byproducts, such as dried distillers grains (DDGs). The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) is pleased with the action. “We see this as an encouraging step in what needs to be an …

Corn, Exports, NCGA

Sustainably Grown USSEC Markets

Jamie Johansen

National Association of Farm Broadcasting’s Trade Talk led me to the U.S. Soybean Export Council (USSEC) booth where I talked with Laura Foell. She is chairman of the USSEC, member of the United Soybean Board and an Iowa farmer. USSEC is comprised of United Soybean Board, American Soybean Association, state soybean associations and industry members. As a non-profit the council’s …

Ag Group, Audio, Exports, NAFB, Soybean

2014 Ag Exports Officially Set Record

Cindy Zimmerman

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has released its final total for fiscal year 2014 agricultural exports and they are indeed a new record. The final tally was a big $152.5 billion, an increase of $11.5 billion or eight percent from last year’s record $141 billion. “American farmers and ranchers have once again achieved another year of record exports Agricultural exports …

Exports, USDA

Grains Council Helping Exports Rebound

Cindy Zimmerman

With a record corn crop being harvested, exports are more important than ever. The United States exported more than 11 percent of the U.S. corn supply to over 100 countries in the 2013/2014 marketing year, which U.S. Grains Council president and CEO Tom Sleight says is a nice recovery from lost market share after the drought of 2012. “Now it’s …

Audio, Corn, Exports, Grains, USGC