Mexico has been one of the top corn importers of corn and corn by-products from the United States. With the revision of trade agreements in the thoughts of many in agriculture, having a good trade relationship with our number one customer is a priority. To assist in developing and maintain the access to the Mexico corn market, the North Dakota Corn Utilization Council (NDCUC) works with and funds the US Grains Council (USGC) to maintain and enhance this market.
To assist in developing and maintain the access to the Mexico corn market, the North Dakota Corn Utilization Council (NDCUC) works with and funds the US Grains Council (USGC) to maintain and enhance this market. Part of the working relationship with USGC is to host countries to tour our US production, handling and processing facilities as well as to have our farmers travel to their country and talk to their buyers about the production practices and quality of our crop. These relationships are important when countries are purchasing commodities abroad.
A recent example of how this connection works has recently occurred in North Dakota. NDCUC participated with USGC in January of 2017 by sending two board members, Scott German and Terry Wehlander, to help USGC promote the quality and value of US corn. In their discussions in Mexico they inquired if corn shipped directly from North Dakota to Mexico was a possibility. After returning to the US, further research on direct shipping from North Dakota to Mexico occurred with discussions being held with local grain buyers, BNSF railway and other trade officials.
By coincidence, corn has recently been shipped directly to Mexico. According to Eric Larson, manager of James Valley Grain – Oakes, they recently loaded over 400,000 bushels of grade 2 corn that was directly shipped from Oakes to Mexico. The direct market to Mexico from North Dakota does not occur very often – corn markets in south central US have better rates to deliver their corn to Mexico. However, in this instance, the value of shipping directly to Mexico from Oakes made financial sense for James Valley Grain. The quality and value of our North Dakota corn crop was made known to Mexican buyers by the NDCUC through the help of USGC.