Feedstuffs in Focus

A trade chat with USDA undersecretary Ted McKinney

Episode Summary

USDA undersecretary for trade and foreign ag affairs Ted McKinney is bullish on the outlook for U.S. ag exports. He gives his outlook for trade with China in 2020, and discusses what USDA is doing to grow U.S. ag sales around the world.

Episode Notes

Trade is hugely important to U.S. agriculture. In late February, U.S. Department of Agriculture chief economist Robert Johansson said U.S. agricultural exports will top $139.5 billion in 2020.

With ongoing trade tensions with China and growing concerns about the economic impact of a potential global coronavirus pandemic, the outlook for U.S. ag trade may be more uncertain than the numbers suggest. One USDA leader, however, is plenty bullish on the prospect of a return to growth in U.S. ag sales abroad.

On the sidelines of the USDA Ag Outlook Forum in late February, Feedstuffs policy editor Jacqui Fatka caught up with USDA undersecretary for trade and foreign ag affairs Ted McKinney. With his stated goal of reaching the "million-mile club" in flying around the world to promote U.S. agricultural products as context, McKinney offered an update on recent trade deals including USMCA, Japan and the Phase One agreement with China.

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