Representatives of the U.S. Grains Council and Kentucky Corn traveled to South Africa this week on a mission to promote corn and assess barriers to increase sales there.
Philip McCoun, KyCorn Promotion Council Chairman, is participating in the effort on behalf of KyCorn and its members.
"I am excited about the networking opportunities the trip will create for U.S. Grains," said Philip. "I look forward to meeting with various key importers and officials to discuss the current corn deficit they are facing."
Under normal climatic conditions, South Africa is a net exporter of approximately 1 million metric tons of corn annually. However, the country is currently battling its worst drought on record, , and it's estimated that South Africa will have to import about 3.5 million tons of corn following declines in local production of more than 40 percent.
The goal of mission traveling this week is to meet with the main grain importers, end users and government officials regarding South Africa's white and yellow corn deficit this marketing year.
The group's goal will be to help these key decision makers understand the benefit of importing U.S. feed grains to help alleviate the domestic shortage. The team will also explore biotech constraints limiting U.S. exports.
KyCorn will report on the outcomes of the mission following its conclusion in mid-May.