Over the past five years, Mexico's imports of U.S. distiller's dried grains with solubles have grown from 360,000 metric tons in 2006 to just over1.6 million tons in 2010. With the support of Market Access Program and Foreign Market Development funding, the U.S. Grains Council encouraged this upward trend by forming relationships with local end-users in Mexico. This approach to building bridges and growing markets can be seen in the USGC's activities in the Jalisco area of Mexico, where the Council engaged potential end-users to spread information on the benefits of DDGS utilization.
In the past, one of the main obstacles facing U.S. DDGS use in Mexico has been widespread misunderstandings of DDGS. In an effort to address these misunderstandings and to make appropriate recommendations to end-users, the Council made in-person visits to Mexican producers to discuss their concerns and evaluate how to address these uncertainties.
After these discussions, the Council developed a series of recommendations to minimize apprehensions and help industry stakeholders increase their usage of DDGS. The Council conducted a series of educational seminars with commercial feed mill representatives to demonstrate how to incorporate DDGS in the feed types of different livestock breeds, they also emphasized the controls that U.S. ethanol plants practice to ensure high DDGS quality.
As a result of the Council's efforts, Jalisco feed mill industry representatives became more confident in the product, leading to more than quadrupling DDGS inclusion rates in the region. DDGS usage in the area grew from a low of 9.2 tons in February 2009 to a high of 41.3 tons per month in May 2010. The success of DDGS in Jalisco mirrors that of Mexico as a whole: with 644,000 tons sold to Mexico through April, this year promises to be another period of record sales.