As the drought in the plains continues and the Midwest slowly recharges, the United States Grains Council announced plans for a "Year of Customer Servicing," to intensify its efforts to educate international buyers on crop conditions and reassure them that the United States was still open for business despite a tough crop year.
At the JCI Autumn Conference held in Shenzhen, China, last month, more than 800 leading representatives from the Chinese feed and livestock industries learned about U.S. grain markets.
The Council coordinates two conferences a year with JCI—a prominent agricultural intelligence and consulting organization based in China. This collaboration enables the Council to be a leader in China in providing relevant and fresh market intelligence.
Such programs are aimed at educating opinion leaders on the value of trade and continuous export expansion, food security and food safety, policy based on sound science, and the reliability of the United States as the world's premier source for feed grains.
"This was a terrific opportunity to voice the story of the U.S. producer" said USGC Manager of Global Trade Kevin Roepke, who spoke on global feed grain supply and demand. "Our international audience is thirsting for as much knowledge and information as they can possibly obtain. And these conferences are a great forum to display our message."
USGC Director in China Dr. Bryan Lohmar, who also served as a conference moderator, said, "This activity helped showcase the U.S. Grains Council as a provider of market information, and build confidence in the United States as a reliable supplier of corn over the long term."
Topics covered included the necessity for risk management, global supply and demand, weather outlook and implications and fallouts of the drought of 2012. The Shenzhen conference is just one of several seminars in which the Council has participated in to date as part of the "Year of Customer Servicing."
Other locations have included Phuket, Thailand, and Shanghai, China.