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Representatives of Mexican Milling Industry Visit North Dakota

Posted: Sep 24 2019

Mexico has long been a top 10 market for U.S. hard red spring (HRS) wheat exports, with average annual purchases of about 10 million bushels.  Mexico is also frequently the top buyer of hard red winter wheat (HRW), oftentimes making them the number one or two buyer of all U.S. wheat classes combined.

In recent years, HRS exports have trended a bit lower to the country – closer to 5-6 million bushels – due to price competition and large crops in competing production regions.  Despite the recent decline in exports, future potential is strong.  For the current marketing year, HRS sales to Mexico are substantially higher than a year ago – 7.2 million bushels versus 2.2 million a year ago.

Continued and growing interest from Mexican millers in direct rail shipments of HRS from North Dakota and Montana was the impetus for a recent visit to North Dakota by a major Mexican milling company.  The group was in the state in mid-August, just as HRS harvest was beginning.  The main topics covered during their visit to the state were a supply/demand/price outlook for HRS, efforts for breeding quality HRS varieties, an overview of inland transportation logistics, meetings with grain traders, and visits to shuttle elevator facilities capable of direct rail shipments to Mexico.  

According to Stephanie Bryant-Erdman, USW Assistant Regional Director for the Mexico and Central American region, who accompanied the team, the visit was a great step in strengthening our relationship with the Mexican industry.  “Touring the various elevators and meeting with the grain traders face-to-face helped build trust in the U.S. system and provided an opportunity for the team and the grain traders to build and strengthen their relationship,” she said.  The discussions and information shared during the visit, along with the contacts made with the grain trade and country elevators will prove valuable for future sales opportunities.

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