Rural Issue

Branstad praises US beef in China and sees bright future

Former Iowa Governor Terry Branstad has been living in China as the U.S. Ambassador and sees good things ahead for American agriculture if trade disagreements are straightened out. He says it took more than a dozen years, but U.S. beef is now coming into China, “I’m gonna tell ya, I’m living here and the other choices are the grass-fed beef from Australia or other countries. It’s not nearly the juicy, corn-fed beef that we’re used to in the United States.”

China dropped restrictions on certain beef imports to China but more remain and Branstad told farm broadcasters visiting China this week he is working to loosen them. He waxed nostalgic for another U.S. food, “Another thing they don’t have here that we really need is sweet corn. Oh, the sweet corn is AWFUL. I mean, it’s like field corn! So, I’m saying, the two things that I really missed last year was the Iowa State Fair and sweet corn (laughter).”

Branstad says there is also great potential in China for U.S. chicken, eggs rice and more beef. China is the largest consumer of pork and the ambassador says that bodes well for more exports to China of U.S. soybeans and sorghum as feedstocks.

Branstad says the Trump administration remains firm on its stance with China and will keep the pressure on, to push for better trade policy, something that hasn’t been done in 20 years or more.


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