Chinn: Mexico trip eye-opening

Missouri’s Ag Director says the recent USDA trade mission to Mexico was eye-opening. Chris Chinn was one of several state ag officials and commodity group members on the tour with Ag Secretary Perdue.

Chinn says they toured the CIMMYT, Mexico’s corn and wheat research facility, “Which is the corn and wheat research facility and it was really amazing there. They have the ability to store seed so there were varieties back in the beginning of corn and wheat that were stored there.”

Chinn says wheat isn’t as big of an import priority for U.S. diets as it is in Mexico. Mexico is the United States’ number-two importer of wheat, only behind Japan.

Chinn says they also toured the world’s largest farmers market in Mexico City, “It employs over 90,000 people. It’s open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Some of it was covered, some of it was open. Some of it had electricity, some of it didn’t. But, just getting to look at how other countries market their products was very interesting.”

U.S. companies were also represented on the trade mission, including Freddie and Deborah Lee, owners of Freddie Lee’s barbeque sauce of St. Louis.

Chinn says everyone they spoke with in Mexico is ready for the U.S. to ratify the USMCA.

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