Building international relationships

On the second day of her agricultural trade mission, Lt. Governor Sue Ellspermann and her delegation visited Indiana’s Sister State, the Tochigi Prefecture. One of their stops was at JET farm, one of the largest dairy and beef farms in Japan.

Indiana Corn Marketing Council president Dennis Maple is on the trip.  “They have three different facilities,” he says. “The one we went to has about 2,500 head.  A lot of their feed ingredients don’t necessarily come from Indiana but they do come from the states.  All the dairy cattle heifers are imported from the United States.  They rely a lot not only on Indiana but other states for the inputs for that dairy farm.”

Maple tells Brownfield as they travel through Asia this week, there is one common theme.  “The countries are very interested in feeding their people,” he says.  “They’re doing the best they can to improve their methods of growing crops and doing a better job in production.”

But, because both countries support each other’s agricultural needs, Maple says it is important to continue to develop their relationship.

Indiana’s Sister State relationship with the Tochigi Prefecture was established in 1999.

AUDIO: Dennis Maple, ICMC (1:30mp3)

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