First-Time Philippine Importer Purchases Several Containers of U.S. Soybeans Directly from U.S. Exporter at Ongoing NCI-USSEC U.S. Agribusiness and Partnership Program

By - Monday, June 20, 2016
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USSEC and the Northern Crops Institue (NCI), under the auspices of the United Soybean Board (USB) and American Soybean Association (ASA), and with support from the Qualified State Soybean Boards (QSSBs) in Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Kentucky, jointly organized its first U.S. Agribusiness and Partnership Program in Fargo, North Dakota from June 13-16.

An international team of 17 customers from Indonesia, Vietnam, Philippines, and Thailand were invited to participate in this unique marketing initiative. USSEC Technical Consultants Dr. Basilisa Reas, and Dr. Budi Tangendjaja, based in the Philippines and Indonesia respectively, led the team. Each was also a featured presenter during the short course.

Delegates were selected to participate because of their role as a decision-maker or influencer in the purchasing process. The main objective of this short course, in addition to providing trade and technical information, was to emphasize the U.S. Soy Advantage to importers in terms of its sustainable production, efficient and reliable logistic and transportation system, transparent and reliable trade practices, better consistency and quality of product, better value for the dollar, and importance of valuing soy against amino acid and metabolizable energy values as opposed to crude protein.

The program for this short course included the following subjects:  Overview of the U.S. and Global Soy and Grain Industry; Dynamics of International Grain Trading Practices; Insights into U.S. Soy and Grain Production Practices; Grain Handling, Storage, and Transportation and Impact of Freight on Price; Contract Specifications for Export; Fundamentals of Futures, Basis and Cash Price; Price and Risk Management (Domestic vs. Export Markets); Appreciation of Soybean and Soybean Meal Quality Parameters; Introduction to Soybean “Crushing” – Meal and Oil; Full Fat Soybean Meal – Production and Uses; U.S. Soybean Meal in Feed Rations – Meta Analysis / Comparative Studies; and Latest Developments in Animal Nutrition and Feed Formulation.

Several field and facility tours were also included in the short course.

A key objective of this program is to convince customers who may be still “sitting on the fence” to give U.S. Soy serious consideration and at least try U.S. Soy in their operations. This was an ideal venue to talk about product specifications and address trade issues with the experts on hand. Ultimately, the goal of the program is to build preference and increase U.S. Soy exports to Southeast Asia.

During the NCI short course in Fargo, USSEC set up a small roundtable meeting to introduce Rob Prather, owner of Global Processing, to the Filipino delegates. The meeting resulted in the sale of three containers of U.S. soybeans to Global Agro Milling Corp (GAMC). Yvonne Que, the owner and operations manager of GAMC, was impressed with the quality of the soybean samples Mr. Prather showed her, which led to the deal. The 62 metric tons (MT) of soybeans will be shipped to the Philippines as soon as the necessary documentation is completed.

GAMC is a family owned group of companies with two commercial feedmills, three farms with 3000 in three different locations, two lines of Insta-pro extrusion machines, and a flour mill. GAMC, under its trading company Besthope, also trades major ingredients throughout the country such as corn and cassava from the province of Mindanao, along with soybean meal. Most of the soybean meal used in both their own operations and produced for trading is supplied by local soybean traders. Mrs. Que said that they want to be assured of enough U.S. soybeans for the production of full fat soybean meal (FFSBM) in their extrusion plant. GAMC extrudes 1500-2000 MT of FFSBM per month.

The Philippines is U.S. Soy’s largest market for U.S. soybean meal outside of North America and so far this year has exceeded its FY 2015 same time last year by over 400,000 MT.

Round-table meeting set up by USSEC with Rob Prather and owners of GAMC group of companies. From left: Rob Prather; Dr. Neneth Reas; and GAMC owners, Dian Que, Lorenzo Que and Yvonne Que.

Round-table meeting set up by USSEC with Rob Prather and the owners of GAMC group of companies. From left: Rob Prather; Dr. Neneth Reas; and GAMC owners, Dian Que, Lorenzo Que and Yvonne Que