Relationship Between Ag and Manufacturing

The Agriculture Secretary believes the U.S. farm and manufacturing sectors are interconnected, and that connection needs to be explained to people in greater detail.  Rod Bain and Secretary Sonny Perdue.

Food manufacturing accounts for 14 percent of all U.S. manufacturing employees.   In 2011, Agriculture and food-related jobs totaled 16 million.



Secretary Perdue Statement on Japan’s Planned Tariff Increase on U.S. Frozen Beef

July 28, 2017, WASHINGTON – The government of Japan has announced that rising imports of frozen beef in the first quarter of the Japanese fiscal year (April-June) have triggered a safeguard, resulting in an automatic increase to Japan’s tariff rate under the WTO on imports of frozen beef from the United States.  The increase, from 38.5 percent to 50 percent, runs August 1, 2017 and last through March 31, 2018.  The tariff affects only exporters from countries, including the United States, which do not have free trade agreements with Japan currently in force.

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue issued the following statement: “I am concerned that an increase in Japan’s tariff on frozen beef imports will impede U.S. beef sales and is likely to increase the United States’ overall trade deficit with Japan.  This would harm our important bilateral trade relationship with Japan on agricultural products.  It would also negatively affect Japanese consumers by raising prices and limiting their access to high-quality U.S. frozen beef.  I have asked representatives of the Japanese government directly and clearly to make every effort to address these strong concerns, and the harm that could result to both American producers and Japanese consumers.”
U.S. exports of beef and beef products to Japan totaled $1.5 billion last year, making it the United States’ top market.

Surprise in Friday’s USDA Cattle on Feed Report

Friday’s USDA Cattle on Feed report may surprise a lot of trade analysts. USDA livestock analyst, Shale Shagam, gives some of the key numbers in Friday’s USDA Cattle on Feed report and mid-year cattle inventory report. Gary Crawford and Shayle Shagam.

First Round of NAFTA Renegotiation Talks Scheduled

Beginning August  16th, negotiators from North American Free Trade Agreement member nations will convene opening talks to modernize this trade deal.  Rod Bain, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, Chandler Goule of the National Association of Wheat Growers.

U.S. Rice Soon To Be Exported Into China

A new U.S.-China trade protocol agreement will soon allow milled rice exports from our country into the Chinese marketplace for the first time. Rod Bain and Betsy Ward of the USA Rice Federation.
Protocol And Process For U.S. Rice Exports To China–Betsy Ward of the USA Rice Federation explains a phytosanitary protocol that will allow U.S. rice exports to China, as well as next steps for exports to begin.

DuPont Pioneer Launches Open Innovation Website

DuPont Pioneer believes that the global scientific community can do truly innovative work when we collaborate. Join us and other thought leaders from around the world to stimulate the development of groundbreaking and sustainable agricultural solutions.

“Farmers expect complete solutions for managing their farms and consumers want a plentiful and healthy food supply. At DuPont Pioneer we collaborate with the world’s brightest minds in the pursuit of transformational agricultural innovations to meet customer and consumer needs.” —Neal Gutterson, Vice President Research & Development, DuPont Pioneer

JOHNSTON, Iowa, July 17, 2017 – DuPont Pioneer today announced the launch of a new component of its long-standing innovation strategy. The new website ( is dedicated to connecting third-party innovators with DuPont Pioneer scientists is now available and focused on five strategic areas – trait discovery, plant breeding, enabling technologies, biologicals and digital solutions.

“DuPont Pioneer is building on its long history of collaboration to advance science-based customer solutions by enhancing its open innovation strategy,” said Neal Gutterson, vice president, Research and Development for DuPont Pioneer. “Through this broad-based approach, we make available our resources to collaborators and develop the most innovative technologies in agriculture, then apply our production scale and route to market to rapidly deploy novel solutions to farmers around the world.”

Currently, there are three active grant opportunities posted on the open innovation web portal targeted to disease resistance; advancements in template-based CRISPR-Cas genome editing; and, big data cluster analysis.

Potential collaborators also are encouraged to submit ideas for consideration beyond the currently available grants. Terms for selected open innovation projects are tailored on a case-by-case basis in a discussion with DuPont Pioneer’s open innovation team.

DuPont Pioneer is the world’s leading developer and supplier of advanced plant genetics, providing high-quality seeds to farmers in more than 90 countries. Pioneer provides agronomic support and services to help increase farmer productivity and profitability and strives to develop sustainable agricultural systems for people everywhere. Science with Service Delivering Success®.


U.S., China Sign Historic Rice Protocol

China consumes equivalent of entire U.S. crop every 13 days

July 20, 2017, Wahington, DC – U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue and China’s Vice Premier Wang Yang have signed a long-stalled phytosanitary protocol that will permit the import of U.S. milled rice into China.

“This is a tremendous leap towards selling U.S. rice in China,” said USA Rice Chairman Brian King.  “Today’s signing caps a decade of effort by the rice industry and the U.S. government to open access to the world’s largest rice importer.  President Trump’s focus on reducing trade deficits with big partners like China put the spotlight on rice, and Secretary Perdue told us he would get this done, and he did.  We’re thankful for the administration’s commitment – from the President on down – to U.S. rice farmers and marketers.”

“The President and Secretary Perdue have opened the door; now it’s time to move to our technical to-do list so that rice shipments can occur,” said Carl Brothers, chairman of the USA Rice International Trade Policy Committee.  “We know China wants to send a team here to inspect mills and facilities certified to ship to China, and we are working with USDA to make that happen in the quickest and most efficient way.”

The protocol, that is the most complex rice phytosanitary agreement the U.S. has ever entered in to, contains an operational workplan that spells out the responsibilities of companies wishing to export in order to protect against the introduction of certain pests into China.  USA Rice led efforts over the past two years to assemble a list of interested exporters, and with USDA to certify compliance with the workplan.

“The focus of our work is now on supporting a successful visit by China’s inspectors,” said USA Rice President & CEO Betsy Ward.  “We waited a decade for the protocol to be signed and our members are anxious to meet the demand of China’s consumers for safe, high-quality U.S. rice.”

Ward said China consumes the equivalent of the entire U.S. rice crop every 13 days and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) expects China to import 4.8 million metric tons of milled rice in 2017/2018, by far the world’s largest import market.  Imports have surged since the beginning of this decade, and have recently been between 4.5 million and 5 million metric tons annually.  China opened its rice market when the country joined the World Trade Organization in 2001, but U.S. rice was barred from the market because of the lack of a phytosanitary protocol between the two governments.  Southeast Asia supplies much of China’s import demand; a situation that will likely continue.

Demand for U.S. milled rice, at least initially, is expected to be strongest in coastal areas among higher income consumers and in the hotel and restaurant trade.

“Food safety is a major issue for China’s consumers, and U.S. rice is well positioned as a safe, high quality food,” according to Chris Crutchfield, chairman of the USA Rice Asia/Turkey Promotion Subcommittee.  “We have promotion programs up and running in China in anticipation of today’s signing and exports to come.  We’ll tailor our promotion activities going forward to include large trade seminars here and in China to educate Chinese consumers about the types and qualities of U.S. rice. We will also focus on quality and the capabilities of our industry in our stepped up trade servicing activities.”

“Today’s news is a shot in the arm for our industry and couldn’t come at a better time.  The President and Secretary Perdue’s leadership was critical, and we thank them and their team again.  We know that market access in China is difficult, and rice shipments will not happen tomorrow, but we are much closer to a meeting China’s market demand with U.S. rice,” concluded Ward.

USA Rice is the global advocate for the U.S. rice industry, representing every segment of the industry in all six rice-producing states.