News: General News
Throughout the past decade, USSEC has spoken about the economic importance of disease free marine fish juveniles and high quality fingerlings and fingerling feeds as the basis for a successful ocean aquaculture industry in Asia. Although the volume of soy feed is limited in hatchery and fingerling systems, healthy juvenile fish are the basis for feed-based ocean production systems that utilize soy as a key feed ingredient.
USSEC works closely with the United Soybean Board to develop and demonstrate soy-optimized feeds for the ocean aquaculture industry that can help drive rapid expansion of the sector. As part of this effort, the USSEC aquaculture program in Southeast Asia (SEA) recently collaborated with the aquaculture sector in Australia to develop soy-optimized feeds for Asian sea bass and to assist the SEA ocean aquaculture sector to improve marine fish hatchery systems.
In 2012, USSEC contractor Dr. Stewart Fielder of New South Wales, Australia, provided training in seminars and on-site visits as a first step in upgrading marine fish hatchery systems in several USSEC target countries in SEA. In 2013, the USSEC SEA aquaculture program will conduct verification feeding demonstrations with industry of the soy-optimized Asian sea bass diet, and in 2014, USSEC plans to provide hands-on marine fish hatchery training for SEA producers with Dr. Fielder in Australia. These efforts are targeted at increasing the productivity and sustainability of the SEA ocean aquaculture industry as a major market for U.S. soy in the coming decade.
Nineteen feed manufacturers from Southeast Asia recently attended the Feed Manufacturing Technology course at the Northern Crops Institute (NCI) in Fargo, N.D., to hear about feed manufacturing technology through presentations, processing demonstrations and hands-on training. USSEC collaborated with the Minnesota Soybean Research and Promotion Council, North Dakota Soybean Council and South Dakota Soybean Research and Promotion Council to co-sponsor the event.
Participants learned about the latest technical information to better understand today’s feed manufacturing industry and the benefits of U.S. soy for animal nutrition.
“In shipping soybeans to Asia, the United States has a definite advantage over our competitors in Brazil and Argentina because we can ship from the Pacific Northwest directly to Asia. The shorter shipping time results in lower freight costs,” said Kim Koch, Ph.D., NCI feed center manager. “There is tremendous potential for animal production in China, India and Southeast Asia, and the more we can do to help them get quality U.S. soybeans to make quality meal, the better off everyone will be.”
The group visited an integrated swine production facility and feed mill in Cando, N.D., export facilities in Portland, Ore., and the Ag Processing Export Terminal in Aberdeen, Wash. Participants saw firsthand the quality, efficiency and reliability of U.S. soy production.
Lead instructor, Kim Koch, has more than 20 years of experience in international consulting with the feed manufacturing industry and has lectured on feed mill efficiency and design, mixing, particle size reduction and pelleting.
USSEC staff recently met with the general manager from Aquafarm Nusantara (PTAN) Indonesia, a division of the tilapia producer, Regal Springs, to promote soy-based pellet feed. PTAN is the only tilapia fillet exporter to U.S. and European markets with an export capacity of more than 160 tons per day.
As a Global Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) certified integrated aquaculture enterprise, the company operates one feed mill, two tilapia hatcheries and two fish processing facilities equipped with thousands of workers and floating cages in four reservoirs and lakes in Indonesia. The feed mill uses U.S. soy-based floating pellet feed for tilapia during nursery and growout stages.
USSEC recently participated in the Ecuadorian Aquaculture Congress in Guayaquil, Ecuador. The event was sponsored by the National Aquaculture Chamber and the University of Guayaquil—both strong supporters of the aquaculture industry in the Americas.
More than 400 industry representatives attended in the meeting to learn about Ecuador’s shrimp production. Attendees also learned about animal health, water resources, the structure and function of production systems, and market access. USSEC’s involvement in aquaculture in the region, specifically shrimp nutrition, was also discussed at the event.
USSEC contractor Herbert Quintero, Ph.D., delivered a presentation on the recent developments of soy usage, including soy ingredients and shrimp feed.
In Ecuador shrimp production in 2012 will amount to an estimated 200,000 tons. Ecuador is among the world’s largest producers of shrimp, and the country strives to become a supplier for Asian markets in the coming years.
USSEC recently hosted a team of 20 Chinese feed mill staff and animal producers to learn more about U.S. soy and livestock production and attend the International Dairy Expo in Madison, Wis. The team visited Kansas State University to hear about new technology in livestock production and management as well as tour dairy farms, feed mills, a feed processing integrator, soybean farms and a grain elevator.The participants expressed interest learning about how the U.S. grain storage and distribution systems work together to deliver a consistent and reliable soy supply for domestic and international customers. The trip increased the Chinese team’s confidence level in the sustainability and availability of U.S. soy to meet their growing demands and continue to support economic growth and industry development in China. The Chinese team also saw first-hand the advantages of using a soy-based diet in dairy production and see soy playing an important role in increasing the productivity of the dairy industry in China.
The Kansas, Iowa and Illinois state soybean associations co- hosted the team. Richard Han, animal utilization technical director; Leo Liu, technical manager; and Sunny Zhang, program manager, escorted the group.
USSEC’s Soy in Aquaculture program recently conducted a seminar on sustainable tilapia cage farming, disease prevention and health management in the Philippines. More than 85 representatives from tilapia cage operators, the Taal Lake Aquaculture Alliance, Inc., government agencies and feed mills attended the seminar. Hsiang Pin Lan, USSEC contractor; Levy Loreto Manalac, USSEC aquaculture technical manager; and Basilisa Reas, Ph.D., USSEC animal utilization technical manager, discussed disease prevention, identifying symptoms on the farm and health management for tilapia farms.
Lan focused on the health management aspect of tilapia cage farming and its importance in maximizing production. He also discussed the proper use of extruded soy floating feeds and the 90 percent satiation feeding technique. Manalac introduced USSEC’s upcoming activities in the Philippines and shared the production benefits of using extruded floating feeds compared to sinking steamed pellet feeds. Reas discussed global supply and demand of raw feed materials and how that impacts the prices of major aqua feed ingredients. Reas also promoted the advantages of using U.S. soy meal as compared to soy meal from other origins.
Government agencies in attendance included the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, and the Municipal Agriculturalist Office of Talisay, Batangas; feed mills included San Miguel Foods, Inc., Santeh Feeds Corp., Feedmix, and New Hope Feeds.
USSEC recently attended the Nicaraguan Small and Medium Poultry Producers Council’s Poultry Congress. USSEC contractor, Carlos Campabadal, offered technical assistance in poultry nutrition and management to the poultry producers in attendance. Campabadal presented information on the advantages of using soy-based feed to obtain maximum egg production during the laying period. He also fielded questions from the more than 250 poultry producers in attendance regarding soy meal quality, feed quality control programs and management topics.
During the seminar, Campabadal met with two members of the Nicaraguan Small and Medium Poultry Producers Council to discuss future collaboration between the council and USSEC. He also met with two members of the Nicaraguan Association of Agricultural Producers to discuss possible USSEC activities in the country’s dairy production industry, the largest dairy producer in Central America.
Nicaragua produces more than 51 million broilers each year and small and medium size laying hen producers represent 50 to 55 percent of the total egg production in the country.
Representatives from USSEC, the United Soybean Board and the American Soybean Association will join executives from international soy trading companies in Puerta Vallarta on Nov.13-15 to discuss the sustainable supply of U.S. soy.
The global status of the grain and oilseed industry is at a critical stage, primarily due to drought conditions that had an impact on production in South America and the United States. Additionally, economic growth in Asian countries has spurred a dramatic increase in demand for livestock and poultry products by a growing middle class. These factors have increased the demand for grain and soy for feed. The conference will allow participants to discuss these topics and reflect upon the challenges and opportunities that face the soy industry.
USSEC continued follow-up meetings with fish growers in Korea who recently participated in USSEC activities during the past year. In Soo Shin, USSEC aquaculture utilization contractor, met with farm staff to maintain awareness of the benefits of using soy-based extruded pellet feed in their operations. The meetings included fish growers who have applied for a government assistance program that encourages the adoption of soy-based pellet feeds. Shin emphasized the high soy protein concentrate found in extruded pellet feed how it can provide an economic and sustainable source of protein for aqua feed. USSEC will continue to promote soy-based extruded pellet feed in the country as a government policy to prohibit fish-based moist pellet feed is expected to take effect in 2016.
Representatives from USSEC, the United Soybean Board and the American Soybean Association joined executives from international soy trading companies in Barcelona last week to discuss sustainable soy trade. This is the second year for the event.
Robert Hanson, FAS Agriculture Counselor, Iberian Peninsula, opened the conference with an outline of the current state of affairs in the Spanish market, commenting on the good work done and to be continued by USSEC. Jim Sutter, USSEC CEO, and Mark Anderson, regional director, then welcomed the more than 60 invited customers on behalf of the U.S. Soy Family.
Next, Vanessa Kummer, USB chair and farmer from North Dakota, spoke on the topic of U.S. sustainability and farmer responsibility towards the land and the market they serve. Sharon Covert, USSEC vice-chairman and farmer from Illinois, then spoke about sustainable farming on her farm as well as others, highlighting her practices and successes as well as challenges faced and overcome. Danny Murphy, ASA director and farmer from Mississippi, presented on the current crop condition as well as what to expect for 2013.
Tom Hammer, National Oilseed Processors Association president, spoke about top export markets for U.S. soy as well as priority issues and solutions to EU trade challenges. Hammer was followed by presentations by industry experts: Thomas Mielke, CEO, Oil World; John Baize, President, John Baize and Associates; Alexander Doring, Executive Director, FEFAC (European Feed Manufacturers Federation); Blair Fortner, Director of Economics, Monsanto Company; Dr. Jannes Doppenberg, Schothorst Feed Research; Dr. Jan van Eys, President G.A.N.S, France; Ken Eriksen – Senior Vice President, Transportation, Industrials and Energy Services, Informa Economics, Inc., USA; and Patrick Vanden Avenne – President, FEFAC.
Jim Sutter closed the conference with a review of the topics and speakers. To request copies of the presented material, please contact Lisa Pine at LPine@ussec.org.
USSEC recently hosted a team of twelve Korean feed mill and broiler integrator executives and staff to the United States. The team included research and development, formulation and purchasing staff as well as two vice presidents from the Korea Feed Association.The delegation had the opportunity to learn about U.S. swine and broiler production, U.S. soy meal production and the logistics of shipping soy.
The team traveled to North Carolina, Oregon and California to visit North Carolina State University, a Cargill crushing plant, Murphy Brown LLC, Butterball, a grain export terminal and Hanjin Shipping. The participants used this trip to build trade relationships with U.S. soy exporters. Say Young Jo, USSEC Korea country director, and Hyung Suk Lee, USSEC animal utilization technical director accompanied the team.
USSEC’s coordination of buyer team visits has been an effective tool in expanding the market for U.S. soy in Korea as well as other countries.
USSEC recently hosted three officials from the Philippines in the United States. The team included the assistant secretary from the Department of Agriculture, an executive director from the Committee Affairs Bureau of the Philippines House of Representatives, and an executive director from the Philippine National Corn Competitiveness board. Kim Nill, USSEC technical issues director, presented information on the human health and environmental benefits of biotech soy.
The team also visited the soybean farm of Dean Campbell, American Soybean Association farmer-director, in Coulterville, Ill. Campbell highlighted the benefits and shared his experiences using biotech soy on his farm.
USSEC recently visited five dairies in the Dominican Republic to provide technical assistance on farm management, replacement heifers, animal health and nutrition recommendations. Carlos Espinosa and Pedro Pablo Lora, USSEC consultants, met with staff from the dairies belonging to the Fedeganorte, Fedegano and Fegasur cooperatives. Espinosa delivered a presentation promoting the use of soy meal in dairy diets to increase milk production and improve performance.
USSEC partnered with the Conaleche National Dairy Program and Guarionex Gell, executive director, to coordinate the visits. The consultants also visited a swine farm to review the management program for replacement gilts, breeding herd, the maternity unit and the weaning area.
A team of the top Chinese soy importers recently attended the Soyatech Soy and Grain Trade Summit in New Orleans. The 16-member team included representatives from COFCO, Yihai-Wilmar, Shandong Bohi, Chinatex, Sinograin, and Guangdong Dongling Group. The delegation met with U.S. grain and oilseed companies to build trade relations while attending the conference. Many of the importers signaled interest in learning more about biotechnology, risk management and trade financing.USSEC-member companies Agrex, Scoular, SAI, RMG, and Thionville briefed the group on the services and products they could provide. Ed Beaman, USSEC global director for commercialization and marketing also discussed USSEC’s mission and services to promote U.S. soy around the world. Xiaoping Zhang, China country director; Claudia Chong, marketing manager; and Yantian Zeng, marketing program assistant, accompanied the Chinese soy importers.
USSEC recently participated in poultry seminars in Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago. Alberto Celis and Robert Thomas, USSEC consultants, provided technical support during the seminars. Celis delivered two lectures about basic broiler and layer nutrition and the importance of digestible amino acids in poultry feed. Thomas discussed the methods to improve efficiency and minimize loss during the production process. Nearly 60 poultry farmers and feed manufacturers attended each seminar. The contractors also promoted the benefits of U.S. soy meal in regard to the high digestible amino acid content as compared to meal of other origins. Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago imported more than 125,000 metric tons of U.S. soy meal during the past marketing year.
USSEC recently offered technical assistance to Proteinol, one of the largest soy processors in Mexico. The company imports more than 600,000 metric tons of U.S. soy each year. Mian Riaz, Ph.D., and Pedro Gonzalez, USSEC contractors, met with Federico Alvarez, commercial sales manager, to discuss marketing strategies for soy-based animal feed products. Riaz presented the benefits of using an expander in soy processing and Gonzalez discussed talked about the variety of products and applications containing soy. The contractors focused on soy meal, soy isolates and soy lecithin.
The long-anticipated U.S.-Panama Free Trade Agreement (FTA) will officially go into effect Oct. 31. The FTA became law this time last year along with the Korea and Colombia FTAs. The passage of the FTAs could provide more than $2.3 billion in additional agricultural exports according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, including a favorable outcome for the U.S. soy industry.
Currently, less than 40 percent of U.S. agricultural exports enter the Panama market duty-free; however, the Panama FTA will immediately secure duty-free treatment for half of U.S. farm exports including soybeans, soy meal and crude soy oil. The 20 percent tariff on refined soy oil will be phased out over the next 15 years.
USSEC recently partnered with the China Feed Industry Association (CFIA) to host the 8th China Feed Industry North-South Exchange program. Representatives from more than 45 feed mills and feed associations from nine northern provinces attended the conference.
Due to the unbalanced regional development of China’s feed industry, participants used this opportunity to find and strengthen business relations. Participants attended seminars in Jiangsu and then visited large feed mills in Jiangsu and Shandong provinces. As a result of the site visits, the host companies in Jiangsu showed interest in cooperating with companies in the northern provinces.
CFIA sent five feed association officers to discuss the feed situations in their respective provinces, as well as feed safety and pellet handling techniques. Xiaoping Zhang, USSEC China country director, also delivered a presentation on the soybean and soy meal market outlook.
A mini-documentary follows the partnership involved in the entire hatch-to-harvest process, including a fingerling transfer from the hatchery at Hubbs Sea World Research Institute, stocking at the Pacifico Aquaculture farm site for grow-out, harvesting, processing at Santa Monica Seafoods, and end consumption at the Sushi School of Los Angeles.
The video was produced by the USSEC and the United Soybean Board, which has funded feed research at Hubbs and Pacifico Aquaculture to reduce reliance on fishmeal and fish oil. Soy-based feeds have proven successful at increasing the sustainability and affordability of aquafeeds.
USSEC recently contracted Paul Smolen, a grain and soymeal trader, to identify emerging opportunities for U.S. soy in the European market. Smolen met with feed compounders, poultry, swine and dairy integrators, and soy importers in Poland and Denmark. Jerzy Kosieradzki, USSEC Northeast Europe contractor accompanied Smolen in Poland and Mark Andersen, regional director for the EU, CIS and Turkey, joined Smolen in Denmark.
“We want Paul to evaluate the Northern EU key markets that have the most potential for U.S. exports on the levels of market characteristics, trade flow, competitiveness and customer profile,” Andersen said. “We want to better understand the opportunities and challenges in the individual customer’s business as well as the local markets.”
Smolen noted three approaches to achieve USSEC’s objective. First, improve customer recognition and utilize the market value of U.S. soy. Second, improve cost efficiencies and market access. And last, reduce transactional risk by strengthening the relationship between U.S. suppliers and foreign customers.
“In effect, I am asking the customer to help USSEC help them,” Smolen added.
In the coming months, Smolen will meet with key customers in Spain, Ireland, United Kingdom and Germany to continue to identify market opportunities for U.S. soy.