Kansas Corn Hosts Trade Teams—Virtually
By Sue Schulte, Director of Communications
Trade teams from West and East Africa, Indonesia, Vietnam, Thailand, New Zealand, and Australia visited Kansas last week – virtually, that is! This October the U.S. Grains Council hosted its Export Exchange conference virtually which included a trade show, meetings and trade team visits with international buyers over Zoom. Kansas Corn, Kansas Department of Agriculture and K-State’s International Grains Program hosted a virtual trade show booth for Kansas grains, and Kansas corn staff and leaders participated in the online Grain Exchange Conference. This year’s Grain Exchange overall hosted 1,207 registrants from 55 different countries. The Kansas Corn Commission is a long-time supporter of the US Grains Council, which is based in Washington, D.C. and has offices around the globe.
Our communications team developed video tours featuring Kent Moore of Moore Farm in Iuka and Mike Chisam, CEO and President of Kansas Ethanol LLC in Lyons. Our goal was to replicate the experience a trade team would have if they were able to come to Kansas and actually tour a farm and ethanol plant. Viewers got an bonus tour as we showcased the DDGS tub and cube facility at Kansas Ethanol, the only one like it in Kansas at the moment.
At Moore Farms, we rode along in the combine with Kent Moore while he talked about technology that’s used on the farm, and talked about this year’s harvest. We went over to his bins and watched his dad, Bob, unload corn.
We can’t thank Kent and Mike enough for helping us with this. Not only did we invade their businesses during a busy time, we also asked them to participate in the trade team Zoom calls to answer questions and interact with the foreign buyers.
The Zoom calls with the trade teams on Oct. 15 were excellent. Our first call was from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. with buyers from west and east Africa. We shared the time with our friends from the Kansas and national sorghum groups. Kent Moore and Silver Lake farmer J.D. Hanna participated in the call. The second call was from 9 p.m. to 11 p.m. with buyers from Southeast Asia. Kent Moore and Mike Chisam were on that call along with Dennis McNinch who farms near Arnold in west-central Kansas. Kansas Corn CEO Greg Krissek led the discussion about corn and ethanol in both sessions.
Normally we would have no more than 20 people in a trade team that visits Kansas. The two trade teams had a total of about 90 buyers who were selected to participate. The questions from both the Africa and Asia teams were excellent and the conversation between our corn and ethanol producers and our visitors was very productive.
For more information about the work being done by U.S. Grains Council to build relationships and foreign markets visit grains.org.
Be sure to watch our videos below!