BALTIMORE, MD -- The U.S. Agricultural Export Development Council (USAEDC) held its annual workshop here earlier this week where over 70 commodity trade associations/stage regional trade groups and nearly a dozen marketing/research companies met to hear the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) updates and current agricultural, economic, and political trends.
The keynote speaker, USDA’s Farm and Foreign Agricultural Services Deputy Under Secretary Alexis Taylor, shared the Department’s positive view of the recently concluded Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement as well as the Department’s continued efforts to expand trade opportunities for U.S. agriculture. In addition to agriculture updates, Charlie Cook, an entertaining political speaker, gave his predictions for the 2016 presidential election which promises to be a unique race.
There were several panel discussions on USDA’s current Global Broad-based Initiatives (GBIs), programs designed to help industry partners engage in common areas across specific markets. USA Rice is participating in four GBIs. USA Rice Vice President of International Promotion Jim Guinn gave an update for the “GBIs in Africa” panel, reporting that USA Rice is the lead organization for the consumer promotion activities in Ghana, conducting three seminars involving rice, poultry, and peanut butter to Ghana’s burgeoning foodservice sector. Each seminar brought in 230-350 foodservice attendees.
“Thanks to the assistance from FAS, we are able to conduct meaningful activities in the Golden Triangle, an area which represents an estimated 85 percent of food consumption in Ghana,” said Jim Guinn. “These activities are efficient at increasing awareness and preference for U.S. products.” The final event of this GBI was held yesterday in Accra (see USA Rice Daily November 18, 2015