WASHINGTON, D.C., U.S. — Officers and staff leaders from the U.S. Grains Council (USGC) and the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) met in Indianapolis, Indiana, U.S. during the week of March 21st to connect with local agribusinesses on issues that affect both domestic and international demand.

The meetings gave the group a chance to spend time face-to-face with stakeholders in the grain, livestock and ethanol industries with a focus on specific challenges and opportunities in today’s market as well as areas of mutual work over the long term.

During a stop at The Andersons Ethanol Group’s Indiana facility, managers highlighted growing demand for distiller’s dried grains with solubles (DDGS), which the company has supplied in bulk to livestock producers for more than a decade, as well as the potential for expanded ethanol demand as the corn industry works to grow export markets for the renewable fuel.

The group specifically discussed the impact of lost sales of DDGS to China, including anti-dumping and countervailing duties investigations being undertaken by that country, as well as ongoing work to diversify global DDGS markets.

The team also talked DDGS quality and corn supply with Rose Acres Farms grain buyers and biotech approval program, specifically in the China market, with Dow AgroSciences LLC leaders.

While the team’s visits were primarily focused on issues of domestic production and demand, the discussions frequently expanded to international implications.

“While most of our attention is focused on building demand in our overseas markets, we know an integral part of that is working closely with NCGA and the whole value chain here in the United States,” said Alan Tiemann, USGC chairman and a farmer in Nebraska, U.S. “Having a robust, quality supply of U.S. corn and co-products is essential to serving our global customers, and we rely on working with our partners to keep production increasing.”

The two groups of officers as well as the partners they met committed to continuing their excellent working relationships, which help address issues of all types facing U.S. grain producers.

“To build profitable demand for U.S. corn, we need strong relationships with the customers who are using our products,” said Chip Bowling NCGA president and farmer from Maryland, U.S. “An important part of that is being able to see their facilities and operations and hear directly from them about what’s happening in their industry. How can we be better partners, and what do we need to do as an industry to help them succeed?”