Asia

U.S./South Korea FTA begins March 15

After five years of negotiations, inside and outside of the United States, the U.S. and South Korea Free-trade agreement (FTA), has completed the last step in its approval process. U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk announced on Tuesday, that the KORUS FTA will be implemented on March 15. FULL STORY »

USMEF’s Seng sees positives in Chinese leaders’ visit to Iowa

When leaders of the world’s largest agricultural products importer and the largest agricultural products exporter meet in constructive dialogue, only good outcomes are to be expected. FULL STORY »

Smithfield partners with Chinese biogas project

Smithfield Foods will work with Beijing DQY Agriculture Technology, a Chinese egg producer, on a biogas project in China. FULL STORY »

China signs U.S. soy deals, set for record purchase

A Chinese trade delegation signed agreements with U.S. grain companies this week to buy 8.62 million tonnes of soybeans from the United States and will ink more deals on Thursday for a record-setting purchase topping 12 million tonnes. FULL STORY »

China’s rising pork imports linked to domestic market fluctuation

China’s potential to affect the world pork market derives from the size and volatility of its domestic pork market. China accounts for nearly half of the world’s pork production and consumption. Its annual pork output is four to five times that of the United States and more than double that of the European Union. FULL STORY »

China’s first GMO corn expected by 2013

Although China’s approval process for genetically modified varieties is long and tedious, the Chinese government is expected to approve the planting of GM corn from Origin Agritech for production in 2013, Reuters reported. FULL STORY »

Xi meets with President Obama, plans Iowa farm visit

Xi, who is expected to replace Hu Jintao as Communist Party chief late this year and then become China's new president in early 2013, will spend two days in Iowa after meeting President Barack Obama in Washington. FULL STORY »

South Korea opposition party threatens FTA

The leader of South Korea's main opposition party, which polls say is headed for a big victory in an April election, said on Wednesday it would repeal a free trade deal with the United States if it wins control of parliament, unless the pact is renegotiated. FULL STORY »

China eyes U.S. soy as drought shrivels South American crop

China, the world's biggest food shopper, is likely to buy more U.S. soybeans this quarter, as a withering drought is expected to cut the South American harvest, pushing soy prices up to fresh highs. FULL STORY »

China to invest in agriculture innovation to boost food security

China said on Wednesday it would boost agriculture innovation in an effort to increase food output, signaling that the world's most populous country is trying to tackle outdated farm and food infrastructure to feed its people. FULL STORY »

U.S. pork showcased in East Japan Railway campaign

The U.S. Meat Export Federation recently launched a marketing campaign with Becker’s, a casual, café-style restaurant chain operated by JR East Food Business, a subsidiary of the East Japan Railway Company. FULL STORY »

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