WASHINGTON, Sept. 6, 2016 – Leaders from seven state departments of agriculture and 23 U.S. agribusinesses and organizations will accompany Deputy Under Secretary for Farm and Foreign Agriculture Services Alexis Taylor on a trade mission to Hong Kong and Shanghai Sept. 7 to Sept. 15 to extend USDA's Women in Agriculture initiative abroad and expand export opportunities for U.S. food and agricultural products.
"USDA is committed to building opportunities for women to grow, learn from one another and lead within their industries," said Taylor. "Women in agriculture have a powerful story to tell – one of leadership, stewardship and resilience – from the combine, to the classroom, to the boardroom. This trade mission provides us an opportunity to discuss the impacts women in the United States and China are having on agriculture and to share our visions for the next generation. In addition, I look forward to joining U.S. agricultural leaders as we seek to enhance our trading opportunities in this region."
The United States has strong trading relations with both China and Hong Kong. Last year, China was the second-largest market for U.S. agricultural exports reaching $23.5 billion. Sustained high demand for bulk commodities such as soybeans and cotton continues, and demand for high-value food, meat and alcohol products is surging. Next year, China is projected to return as the United States' top export market.
In contrast to China, where more than 70 percent of U.S. exports are bulk commodities, more than 90 percent of U.S. exports to Hong Kong are high-value, consumer-oriented products. With a population of more than 7.2 million people packed into 426 square miles, Hong Kong relies on imports for more than 95 percent of its food supply. It is the United States' seventh-largest market, with top U.S. exports including tree nuts, beef, poultry and fresh fruit.
Mission participants come from across the United States and represent a range of agricultural products and commodities. They will meet with potential customers and host government representatives, forging relationships and learning about the market conditions and business environment.
Participating U.S. Organizations and Companies:
1. American Commodity Company, LLC, Williams, Calif.
2. Bridgepathway, LLC, Jericho, N.Y.
3. Cape Blanco Cranberries, Inc., Port Orford, Ore.
4. Dragonberry Produce, Inc., Canby, Ore.
5. Earthbound Farm, San Juan Bautista, Calif.
6. Green Plains, Inc., Omaha, Neb.
7. Halcyon Trading Company, LLC, Alpharetta, Ga.
8. Hidden Villa Ranch, Fullerton, Calif.
9. Katzen International, Inc., Cincinnati, Ohio
10. Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, Lansing, Mich.
11. Midwest Trading, LLC, Bloomington, Minn.
12. Minxta, LLC, Miami Beach, Fla.
13. Mississippi Department of Agriculture and Commerce, Jackson, Miss.
14. Momentum Feed and Energy, LLC, Houston, Texas
15. Moore Brothers Beef, Inc., Red Springs, N.C.
16. National Cattlemen's Beef Association, Centennial, Colo.
17. National Corn Growers Association, Chesterfield, Mo.
18. Ocean Spray International, Inc., Lakeville, Mass.
19. Oklahoma Department of Agriculture Food and Forestry, Oklahoma City, Okla.
20. Oregon Department of Agriculture, Salem, Ore.
21. Redbud Farm and Vineyard, Washington, Okla.
22. Southern United States Trade Association, New Orleans, La.
23. Tennessee Department of Agriculture, Nashville, Tenn.
24. TRC Trading Corporation, Roseville, Calif.
25. United Global Trading, Dallas, Texas
26. U.S. Grains Council, Washington, D.C.
27. U.S. International Foods, LLC, St. Louis, Mo.
28. U.S. Soybean Export Council, Chesterfield, Mo.
29. Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Richmond, Va.
30. Washington State Department of Agriculture, Olympia, Wash.
USDA trade missions open doors and deliver results for U.S. exporters, giving them the opportunity to gather market intelligence and develop strategies to start or expand their sales in key markets overseas. For more information, visit www.fas.usda.gov/topics/trade-missions.
The past seven years have represented the strongest period in history for U.S. agricultural exports, with international sales of food and farm products totaling $911.4 billion between fiscal years 2009 and 2015. In fiscal year 2015, American farmers and ranchers exported $139.7 billion of food and agricultural goods to consumers worldwide. Exports are responsible for 20 percent of U.S. farm income, also driving rural economic activity and supporting more than one million American jobs.
USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer. To file a complaint of discrimination, write to USDA, Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Avenue, S.W., Stop 9410, Washington, DC 20250-9410, or call toll-free at (866) 632-9992 (English) or (800) 877-8339 (TDD) or (866) 377-8642 (English Federal-relay) or (800) 845-6136 (Spanish Federal-relay).