In this file:


·         NCBA's Kent Bacus Talks Trade, Considering Access to China's Market, NAFTA Revision and Japan

·         Farm Bill Hearing Stresses Importance of USDA Export Programs



NCBA's Kent Bacus Talks Trade, Considering Access to China's Market, NAFTA Revision and Japan


Oklahoma Farm Report

14 Jul 2017


Just back from China as part of the delegation sent over to welcome US beef into China after a 13 year ban, Kent Bacus, director of international trade and market access for the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, spoke with Radio Oklahoma Ag Network Farm Director Ron Hays, about this significant achievement for the beef industry, during the NCBA Summer Business meeting in Denver this week.


You can listen to their full conversation, by clicking or tapping the LISTEN BAR below at the bottom of this story.


“It was a tremendous honor to be there alongside Ambassador Branstad, Secretary Perdue and our president, Craig Uden,” Bacus remarked about his trip while acknowledging the hurdles that must still be overcome to help the market reach its full potential. “We’re very, very happy to see beef back into China. But, we also know that it’s going to be a slow process.”


While China has granted the US beef industry access to its markets, the fact remains that viable markets must still be identified and developed in order for US beef exports to build strong commercial momentum. As organizations like the US Meat Export Federation and others attempt to do this, back home, producers will need to begin shifting their production efforts to fit within the parameters of the trade agreement with China, in order to have suitable products to meet the demand being cultivated.


“China has laws that restrict and prohibit the use of beta-agonists and hormones,” he said. “Which are obviously very important technologies we use in our industry. But at the same time, there’s such a big market in China, we’re going to try to find ways to both comply with these restrictions on our production, but still be able to produce enough product.”


A daunting task ahead, absolutely. But as a matter of fact, the US already has the infrastructure for such production practices set up in place, thanks to past trade alliances that included similar requirements. Bacus, though, says that like anything, there will always be growing pains, but assures producers will eventually adapt and production will begin to streamline. The hard part, he insists, of actually getting beef access back into China, is over. The rest will come with time...


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Farm Bill Hearing Stresses Importance of USDA Export Programs


Source: NAFB News

via Andy Eubank, Hoosier Ag Today - Jul 17, 2017


Agriculture Department export programs are key to keeping conventional and organic producers in the black, as lawmakers write the next farm bill. That was the message from producers and ag lawmakers at a Senate farm bill hearing.


USDA export assistance programs have no funding guarantee when their 2014 farm bill authority runs out in 2019. Among them are the Market Access, Foreign Market Development and Technical Assistance for Specialty Crops programs, returning more than $28 for every dollar invested, or more than $2 billion a year in net farm income, based on a study by Informa Economics.


“More than 13 percent of the beef and beef variety meats we produce in this country are now exported, and exports account for more than 25 percent of the pork produced,” said Greg Haines with the U.S. Meat Export Federation. “During the first half of this year exports added an average of $270 per head for every steer and heifer slaughtered in this country, and $55 to the value of every hog. As a producer that can be the difference between being in the red and the black.”


Haines says red meat exports add some 45-cents to a bushel of corn...