USDA Trade Initiative Aims to Expand Markets in Sub-Saharan Africa

  |   News Release   |   FAS-PR-0106-13

Contact: Office of Communications (202) 720-4623

WASHINGTON, Sept. 13, 2013 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) today announced that Deputy Secretary of Agriculture Krysta Harden will lead a trade mission to promote U.S. agricultural trade and investment in sub-Saharan Africa, Sept. 16-20. The trade mission launches USDA's Sub-Saharan Africa Trade Initiative, which aims to expand U.S. agricultural commercial ties in the region.

During the week, the USDA delegation will travel to South Africa and Mozambique to learn first-hand about the region's rapidly evolving market conditions and business environment –information that will enable agribusinesses to develop export strategies for sub-Saharan Africa. The mission includes 18 U.S. companies and 16 U.S. agricultural commodity trade associations that represent a variety of agricultural products including snack foods, beverages, fruit and nuts, agricultural machinery and more. The companies and trade associations will meet with African buyers for business meetings during the week.

"Many U.S. agribusinesses — especially small and medium-sized enterprises – are beginning to appreciate the opportunities for trade and investment in Africa," said Harden. "This initiative will establish business relationships between U.S. and African businesses and support agricultural growth throughout the region."

Sub-Saharan Africa's strong economic outlook, growing middle class and surging demand for consumer-oriented foods creates a promising market for U.S. food and agricultural products. Over the past decade, U.S. agricultural exports to sub-Saharan Africa increased by more than 200 percent. Last year, bilateral agricultural trade between the United States and sub-Saharan Africa totaled more than $4.75 billion.

Harden will also open Africa's international food & drink trade show (IFEA) in Johannesburg on Sept. 18. Eleven U.S. companies will exhibit at the show's USA pavilion. In addition to the trade mission, USDA officials will meet with South African officials to discuss bilateral trade issues and visit food aid projects funded by USDA's Food for Progress Program in Mozambique.

The USDA trade initiative supports the U.S. Strategy Toward Sub-Saharan Africa outlined by President Obama in June 2012.

U.S. Companies Participating in the Sub-Saharan Africa Trade Initiative

  • Allied International Corporation
  • American Food Service
  • American Peanut Council
  • Bell Carter Olive Company
  • Bridgeforth International Corporation
  • Case New Holland
  • Cranberry Marketing Committee
  • Cuba Beverage Company
  • FAIM Africa, Ltd.
  • GSI Group
  • JM Grain, Inc.
  • Land O' Lakes/Purina Animal Nutrition LLC
  • PS International
  • Strickland Ranch & Exports, Inc.
  • Suma Trading LLC
  • Tri-States Grain Conditioning, Inc.
  • USA Dry Pea & Lentil Council
  • Zafi Beverages & Agricultural Technologies, Inc.

USDA Cooperators Participating in the Sub-Saharan Africa Trade Initiative

  • American Peanut Council
  • American Soybean Association
  • Cranberry Marketing Committee
  • National Renderers Association
  • North American Millers' Association
  • North American Export Grain Association
  • Organic Trade Association
  • Southern Forest Products Association
  • Southern U.S. Trade Association
  • USA Dry Pea & Lentil Council
  • U.S. Grains Council
  • U.S. Meat Export Federation
  • USA Poultry & Egg Export Council
  • USA Rice Federation
  • U.S. Wheat Association
  • Western U.S. Agricultural Trade Association


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