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Mexico Is Largest Buyer of U.S. Corn

by Ken Root

Listen Here: World of Agriculture 1-24-17

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Monday’s actions by President Trump indicates that he is going to bust up trade deals past and present. The US Grains council, would like to make him aware that the number one market for corn is Mexico.

With recently becoming the number one corn importer, Mexico is proving to be an important market for U.S. farmers. Ryan LeGrand serves as the U.S. Grains Council director in Mexico. He provides an update of the grain flow into Mexico.

“Last crop year of 2015-2016 we imported over 13 million tons, and if you look at the calendar year of 2016 we are going to get pretty close to 14 million tons. That will be two straight years of record corn exports for Mexico. Japan use to be the number one corn exported, but Mexico took over that spot this year,” LeGrand said.

Under the North American Free Trade Agreement, LeGrand says trade has quadrupled between the U.S. and Mexico. “The animal sectors in Mexico have greatly benefited from the phasing out of tariffs and quota’s into U.S. corn and grains into Mexico,” LeGrand explained. “When NAFTA was implemented the Mexican animal production sector was really in it’s infancy. Today, it’s grown to a state of the art industry, and it revivals any of the top industries in the world.”

He says if NAFTA is weakened in the future, farmers in the U.S. will feel the pinch. “There will probably be an increase in tariffs so, it would cause the Mexicans to look south at Brazil and Argentina for more of their corn. That would cut into our market share and eventually affect the price of U.S. corn.”

LeGrand says Mexico has the potential to grow as an importer of U.S. grains in the future.

Learn more about the work by the U.S. Grains Council to promote trade online at www.grains.org

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