USSEC collaborated with the feed associations AGAFAC in Galicia, and IACA in Portugal, to organize two U.S. Soy country meetings.
The Galicia meeting was held in Santiago de Compostela, in the center of Galicia, the seat of the regional government.
40 people representing 90 percent of the local feed, meat, and import industry attended the meeting in Spain. Galicia is situated in northwest Spain and represents 15 percent of the total feed industry, three million tons, importing around 600,000 metric tons (MT) of soybean meal a year. All of the soybean meal is biotech derived, as Spain does not have any issues related to GMOs. Galicia is the area of Spain on the Atlantic coast, with advantages related to freight imported from the U.S. All raw material for the industry is imported because there is limited local agricultural production. This is the area of Spain that frequently imports from the U.S.
The meeting have two parts; the first talked about quality, sustainability and circular economy. During this segment, USSEC spoke about the advantages of U.S. soybean meal in relation with other origins and also presented the U.S. Soy Sustainability Assurance Protocol (SSAP) as the solution to the new market requirements. The second part covered markets: FCStone’s Florida office discussed futures markets and two other presentations focused on cash markets.
The meeting in Portugal followed a similar format and was celebrated in Alcobaça, 100 kilometers from Lisbon, in an area where the majority of the feed industry has feed mills. In this case, FCStone attended from their Dublin office. About 40 people attended the meeting, representing the feed and meat industries, plus crushers and importers.
Portugal produces three million tons of feed annually. They country import soybeans to crush at the Bunge plant. Another local crusher, Iberol, also imports some soybean meal. Total soybean meal consumption is about 800,000 MT yearly.
Customers appreciated these meetings that permitted them to meet others in the industry and, most importantly, obtain actualized information about markets and new inputs that will arrive to their markets. Customers also heard how to improve soybean meal use and the importance of U.S. Soy sustainability.