The trade issues surrounding China's anti-biotech stance in late 2013 and 2014 did not hinder the country from importing record amounts of U.S. grains, according to a news story by the U.S. Grains Council (http://bit.ly/…).
In fact, China imported more than 3 million metric tons each of U.S. corn, sorghum and dried distillers grains with solubles in the current marketing year ending Aug. 31.
China's zero tolerance for the MIR 162 biotech trait in corn brought exports of U.S. DDGS to a halt, especially after the country's most recent announcement requiring all shipments of DDGS to be accompanied by an official certification that it is MIR 162-free. No such certification exists.
The Council has been working towards a solution to the trade disruptions, recognizing that China is a valuable buyer of U.S. grains and co-products. Chinese end-users love the quality of U.S. feed products, especially since China's demand for high-quality corn continues to exceed available supply. Chinese end users can also find huge margins in using U.S. corn, sorghum and DDGS in light of the country's high domestic prices. Recent production increases and last year's record corn crop have not kept China's domestic corn prices from rising.
But in the absence of such robust corn and DDGS imports, Council staff has been promoting sorghum in China, since it is not subject to tariff rate quota restrictions. Consequently, a surge in sorghum exports to China has occurred. According to the Council's article, China is forecast to buy more than 30% of all U.S. sorghum production this year.
Cheryl Anderson can be reached at Cheryl.firstname.lastname@example.org
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