soybean field

USSEC Holds Member Appreciation Session

USSEC held a session specifically targeted for its members on August 29 in Indianapolis.
After USSEC chairman Jim Miller welcomed participants, USB director Bob Metz spoke on the value of USSEC membership. Mr. Metz pointed to the importance of the U.S. Soy industry’s international marketing, infrastructure, sustainably raised soy, and infrastructure.
“We’re in it for the long term,” he stressed. Mr. Metz explained that multi-generational U.S. farms resonate with international customers, and said that the U.S. Soy Global Trade Exchange provides opportunities for trade teams to visit U.S. farms, deepening the personal connections made at the event itself.
USSEC value holds a strong appeal to members because of its approximately 80 people employed worldwide that provide assistance to customers, Mr. Metz concluded.
Grain and oilseed export trader Lucas Blaustein of USSEC member Lansing Trade Group encouraged U.S. farmers and exporters to think about how they market.
He defined the three things that set USSEC apart from other organizations as: grower collaboration, overseas presence and industry-level solutions.
Mr. Blaustein described how USSEC’s overseas presence helps to “build human connections, provide an unbiased voice, and create events to do business and to make personal connections.”
Finally, Mr. Blaustein lauded USSEC’s efforts in Taiwan, saying that USSEC had “nailed it” with the sustainable soy program, which helped provide the certificate demanded by all Taiwanese exporters. “Exporters cannot do this alone,” he stated.
Jason Hafemeister, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Trade Policy Coordinator and Foreign Agricultural Service Acting Associate Administrator, gave the keynote address.
Mr. Hafemeister detailed FAS’s role, including policies, trade barriers, promotion work and capacity building; trade works; and globalization.
In the breakout sessions that followed, smaller groups discussed questions including:

  • Where is USSEC not hitting the mark?
  • Where is USSEC doing an excellent job?
  • What issues in the soy industry will become greater in the next five years?