Agriculture Receives Millions to Promote Exports

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has allocated $234.5 million to 70 U.S. trade organizations to help promote American food and agricultural products overseas.

“In today’s highly competitive international markets, we must provide our exporters with the resources they need to compete overseas during the twenty-first century,” said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. “When you consider the current global financial crisis, increasing production in key competitor countries, and aggressive use of export promotion tools by our competitors, USDA’s market development programs are more important than ever.”

The funding for fiscal year 2010 is allocated under the Market Access Program (MAP) and the Foreign Market Development (FMD) Cooperator Program, both administered by USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS).

Among the recipients was the National Renderers Association, which received $811,588 in MAP funding and $888,947 under the FMD program.

The MAP uses funds from USDA’s Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) to share the costs of overseas market development and promotional activities with U.S. nonprofit agricultural trade organizations, state regional trade groups, and cooperatives. Activities conducted with MAP funding include market research, consumer promotions for retail products, technical capacity building, and seminars to educate overseas customers.

Under the FMD program, USDA’s CCC establishes a partnership with nonprofit U.S. agricultural trade organizations. Funding priority is given to organizations that represent an entire industry or are nationwide in membership and scope. Program activities focus on reducing market impediments, improving the processing capabilities of importers, modifying restrictive regulatory codes and standards in foreign markets, and identifying new markets or uses for U.S. products.

Other recipients include the American Soybean Association, $5.1 million under MAP and $6.8 million under FMD; Pet Food Institute, $1.4 million in MAP funding; U.S. Dairy Export Council, $4.2 million under MAP and $704,974 under FMD; U.S. Hide, Skin and Leather Association, $106,281 in MAP funding and $146,322 in FMD funding; U.S. Poultry and Egg Export Council, $5.1 million in MAP funding and $1.5 million in FMD funding.

April 2010 RENDER | back