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Agricultural Sectors

Overview

The United States Department of Agriculture, through the Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS), operates six offices in the People‘s Republic of China for the purpose of expanding exports of U.S. agriculture, fishery, and forestry products. U.S. agricultural, fishery, and forestry exports to China from January to December 2011 reached a new high of $21.9 billion, up 13 percent from 2010. China is the second-largest U.S. overseas market for agriculture, fish, and forestry exports. Given China‘s rising incomes and demand for raw materials and finished foodstuffs, FAS forecasts that China‘s imports will continue to grow well into the future. Exports continue to be dominated by bulk commodities, notably soybeans ($10.5 billion), cotton ($2.6 billion), and corn ($0.8 billion). However, intermediate products exports also did well, with hides and skins reaching a record export level of $1.2 billion. Importantly, U.S. exports of consumer-oriented food products, which represent high value-added products, also hit a record $2.0 billion of exports to China in 2011. In this category, record sales were set for red meats (pork) at $0.6 billion, dairy products at $0.4 billion, processed fruits and vegetables at $0.2 billion and nuts at $0.2 billion. Wine and beer exports were a record $65 million.

China‘s agriculture, fishery and forestry exports to the United States during calendar year 2011 were $8.2 billion, up 12 percent from the previous year. The United States is China‘s second-largest overseas market for agriculture, fish and forestry exports.

Due to the changing regulatory environment in China, U.S. exporters are advised to carefully check import regulations. Individuals and enterprises interested in exporting U.S. agriculture, fishery, and forestry commodities to China should contact the FAS offices (listed below) as well as USDA Cooperator organizations. Exporters of U.S. agricultural commodities should also review the FAS website (http://www.fas.usda.gov), which features general information about trade shows and other promotional venues to showcase agricultural products, FAS-sponsored promotional efforts, export financing and assistance, and a directory of registered suppliers and buyers of agricultural, fishery, and forestry goods in the United States and abroad.

The Animal Plant Health Inspection Service also operates an office in Beijing.

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