Central Rice consumption here is comparatively low at less than 26 pounds per capita in 2017. The region consumed 339,863 MT of U.S. rice last year; however, cultural preferences in the Northern Triangle favor other foods such as corn and beans.
Market Challenges & Opportunities
The U.S. has gained duty free access for a certain amount of rice exported to these countries via the Central America Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA- DR). These countries must use local production before receiving import licenses, therefore, annual imports fluctuate based on local production.
USA Rice Activities
USA Rice conducts comprehensive marketing programs by targeting consumers as well as the rapidly expanding foodservice industry. A market research study among rice consumers in Honduras in 2017 revealed a potential for growth in long grain white, parboiled, and white rice. Social media campaigns on Facebook and Instagram in El Salvador were developed targeting consumers to raise awareness of the benefits of rice for younger populations. Importers, the food service industry, and middle/ upper income consumers are the primary target group for USA promotional activities in this area.