U.S. Dry Bean Council
The Northarvest Bean Growers Association is a major contributing member of the U.S. Dry Bean Council (USDBC). Working with USDBC, our dry bean growers made contact with countries around the world to maintain existing markets and explore opportunities to develop new markets, monitor trade policy and market trends, and discuss dry bean demand with importers, wholesalers, packagers and retailers. The USDBC exists to increase the consumption of U.S. dry beans worldwide. Kevin Regan, Webster, N.D. and Roger Carignan, Cavalier, N.D. represent Northarvest on the USDBC Board of Directors.
Manuel Sarra, general manager of Importadora del Sur, and Darina Mejia, international purchase manager from Grupo Perfesa, were hosted by the NBGA. John Osorno, NDSU is showing visitors pinto slow darkening seed
Recent Trade Missions
Annual Global Reverse Trade Mission
USDBC hosts an annual global reverse trade mission, a flagship event to allow new global industry contacts and buyers to observe dry bean harvest, learn of new advancements in dry bean research, and meet with our growers and dealers. This year’s mission went to Michigan, North Dakota, and Nebraska September 7 – 13, 2019. The trip started in Michigan with a tour of field evaluation, receiving and processing facilities, and one on one business networking. In Fargo the participants enjoyed one on one meetings with industry representatives and spent a day at the Northern Crops Institute (NCI) to learn about the laboratory facilities and new research on dry bean ingredients. This has become an important focus of the mission as buyers in certain markets become increasingly interested in beans as snack and food ingredients.
The group also visited the Food and Nutrition Lab at North Dakota State University (NDSU) to learn more about the health benefits of dry beans. The trade mission wrapped up in Nebraska with more one on one meetings with industry members, visits to bean processing facilities, on farm harvest demonstrations, and time at the University of Nebraska to learn about dry bean breeding. Every year brings new contacts from loyal buyers, new possibilities from potential new markets and renewed interest in sourcing high quality US dry beans.
Global Reverse Trade Mission Representatives at the Northern Crops Institute in Fargo.
USDBC Trade Mission to Argentina
U.S. Dry Bean Council representatives traveled to Argentina in June 2019 to meet with growers, agronomists, processors, agricultural technology experts, and traders/exporters to better understand the dry bean value chain in Argentina and trends in production and international marketing. Representatives from the Northarvest region included John Berthold, dealer and president of Green Valley Bean Company in Park Rapids, Minnesota, and Mark Dombeck, a bean grower near Perham, Minnesota.
USDBC Trade mission members (Mark Dombeck, John Berthold, Ellen Levinson and Alejandro Leloir) meet in one of the fields of Creston Farms near Metan, Salta Province.
U.S. Dry Bean Council Meets with Cuban Officials
The U.S. Dry Bean Council met with Ambassador Carlos Fernandez de Cossio, General Director for U.S. Affairs for Cuba’s Foreign Ministry, in Washington, DC in early May 2019. Despite the renewal of several regulations limiting trade with Cuba, Cuba remains interested in engaging with U.S. entities whose commercial activities are still permitted by regulations. Fortunately, those regulations remain favorable to agriculture. For the first time, the 2018 Farm Bill includes language allowing for the use of marketing funds grated under the MAP and FMD programs to conduct trade development activities in Cuba. USDBC will continue to provide updates on this opportunities as it develops.
The USDBC, along with representatives from other agricultural trade groups, met with Ambassador Carlos Fernandez de Cossio, General Director for U.S. Affairs for Cuba’s Foreign Ministry, in Washington DC.