Trade Seminars in China Grow Interest In American Products

In December 2020, Food Export – Midwest and Food Export - Northeast hosted a series of trade seminars to allow Chinese traders and buyers to gain a better understanding of the work done by Food Export in China.

The main purpose is to increase the awareness among the trade of the vast opportunities to work with small and medium size U.S. value-added processed food companies. The seminars were held throughout the month of December in the cities of Shenyang, Xi’an and Hangzhou.  

Shenyang is the provincial capital and the largest city of Liaoning Province in northeastern China. With over eight million in population, Shenyang is an important hub of Northeast China. The entire Northeast is one of China’s fastest-growing regions and it is an emerging market for U.S. foods in recent years.

Xi’an, located in Northwest China, is the capital of Shaanxi Province and one of the oldest cities in China. Economic growth in the region boomed in the past several decades, to which Xi’an is now the most populous city in the region and was named one of the seven main emerging megacities in China in 2019.

Hangzhou is one of the fastest-growing cities thanks to it being a cultivating hub for e-commerce companies. Its proximity to Shanghai, an hour away by high-speed train, attracts many business owners in Shanghai to relocate or establish branch offices in Hangzhou, it also allows the development of a comprehensive logistics system, with the latest products and trends in Shanghai to spread quickly in Hangzhou.

Attendees in all three cities were greeted by Food Export’s In-Market Representative, Ian Chien. Due to the global COVID-19 pandemic, no Food Export staff members were able to travel to China to present in person at the seminar but Tim Hamilton, Executive Director/CEO of Food Export – Midwest and Food Export - Northeast, welcomed and thanked the Chinese trade via a pre-recorded video message. After Tim Hamilton’s welcome remarks, the ATO directors in Shenyang and Xi’an thanked the attendees for their support of Food Export and U.S. agricultural products and expressed their optimism regarding the future for U.S. exports to China. Food Export’s In-Market Representatives, SMH International, provided a detailed, comprehensive presentation on Food Export’s programs and services, including the Branded Program and Trade Lead system through which importers can connect with export-ready U.S. Suppliers in the Midwest and Northeast USA.

A total of 126 buyers and importers attended the seminars in Shenyang (44), Xi’an (42) and Hangzhou (40). The seminars have successfully resulted in 17 trade leads submitted to Food Export to date.  With a rekindled interest in purchasing from the U.S., the trader seminar allowed Food Export to introduce the programs and services to Chinese buyers to educate and attract them to participate in future activities. Feedback from the attendees in all three cities indicated that they were glad to learn about the variety of programs that Food Export offers to importers. Many attendees have expressed interest in participating in Food Export activities in the future.

China Seminars

This free educational opportunity was made possible by the USDA Agricultural Trade Promotion (ATP) Program which was set in place in early 2019 to help mitigate the damage caused by retaliatory tariffs on U.S. agricultural products.

Food Export uses funding from the Agricultural Trade Promotion Program (ATP) and the Market Access Program (MAP) to help America’s small businesses increase their exports of food and agricultural products. As these exports increase, these small businesses are creating jobs and improving the strength and stability of our agricultural economy. Food Export - Midwest and Food Export - Northeast are non-profit organizations that work in collaboration with their member state departments of agriculture and the USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service. They offer a wide range of programs and services that help boost America’s agricultural exports.  

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