U.S. corn exports to Latin America continue to grow. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Western Hemisphere's accumulated U.S. corn imports were more than 67 million bushels ahead of last year at this same time [prior to December holidays]. Mexico, the second-largest U.S. corn market, is the largest contributor to this market change, importing 39.4 million bushels more than 2012.
"It is exciting to see how free trade agreements lead to increased exports for farmers," said National Corn Growers Association Trade Policy and Biotechnology Action Team Chair Jim Zimmerman. "The work done on a policy level is having a direct impact upon markets for corn. Right now, farmers clearly understand the importance of fostering all markets, particularly given the incredible abundance grown in 2013. Tearing down the barriers that allow our customers abroad access to our supply only makes sense for American agriculture and America's economy."
While Mexico dwarfs other importers, both Colombia and Peru show significant increases of U.S. corn imports. These two dramatic turnarounds can be attributed to free trade agreements that removed trade barriers and made U.S. corn a more attractive and competitively priced product.