Posted on April 26, 2013 at 8:30 AM by Iowa Corn
Southwest Iowa Farmer, Julius Schaaf represented Iowa farmers yesterday during the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission public hearing on China's agriculture policy and U.S. access to China's market at Iowa State University in Ames, Iowa. Each year the commission holds a field hearing outside Washington, D.C. This year the commission chose Iowa State University based on its strengths in agriculture, economics and relationships with China and East Asia.
Julius is a former chair for the Iowa Corn Promotion Board and incoming chair of the US Grains Council. He has travelled to China and is focused on improving the attitudes and trading options for biotechnology in China.
“Our Iowa and National relationships with China hinges on food security,” said Schaaf. “The Chinese goal of 95% food self sufficiency is not realistic with their limited arable land and limited fresh water. They will be able to make improvements, but generally the outlook is for increased exports of ag products from Iowa.
Iowa Secretary of Agriculture, Bill Northey spoke ab
out the lack of intellectual property protection in China and how it limits the introduction of US crop genetics. “Capturing just a small part of this enormous market will have a significant impact on profitability to Iowa grain and livestock farmers. Chinese demand for grain not only supports US agriculture, but it also supports agriculture production and expansion all over the world. A more predictable Chinese demand for products could help direct world production.
Schaaf compared trade with Japan asking for more stability from China. “A stable agricultural import policy allows markets to work and causes fewer disruptions.” Plus he said, “A dialog about issues restricting trade is critical. Understanding the buyers concern and explaining the science behind US production techniques is where we need to be headed as trading partners.”