WASHINGTON -- National Corn Growers Association CEO Rick Tolman released the following statement in support of the pending free trade agreements with Korea, Colombia and Panama. Tolman testified today before the House Agriculture Committee.

“Increased production and a consistent product make the United States a reliable supplier of corn in the world market. NCGA strongly supports passage of the three-pending Free Trade Agreements with Korea, Colombia and Panama. Beyond increasing domestic and international demand for corn, passing these FTAs also benefits our customers in the livestock and poultry industries. Developing new markets for our country’s agricultural products will help our sector lead the nation in economic growth and international competitiveness.

“The United States is the largest corn producer and exporter in the world, and exports of corn and corn co-products are essential to producer income. During the 2009-10 marketing year, the United States exported 50.4 million metric tons of corn worldwide. Corn co-products such as distiller’s dried grains (DDGS) represent a growing export market for domestic producers. Our members want to maintain current export markets and significantly increase demand for corn through opportunities in value-added corn products. 

“NCGA remains committed to the development and maintenance of fair and open global trade policies. We look forward to working with Congress to ensure swift passage of these important FTAs.”

Tolman’s full testimony can be found here.