Dry bean tonnage in U.S. government food aid programs picked up significantly at the end of 2018, logged as the first quarter of fiscal year 2019. FSA call forwards for the first quarter of FY19 show over 10,000 MT of dry beans going into USDA school feeding programs in various countries and into USAID’s emergency response to the ongoing crisis in Yemen. Four different types of dry beans were used in the programs recorded to date. A small tender for emergency response to Venezuela shipped via Colombia was issued last week.
The U.S. Dry Bean Council will be bringing a new food aid consultant on board shortly, and anticipate efforts to promote continued use of dry beans in food aid programs will pick up this month. In 2019, the USDBC will also be working to determine:
- The food aid pipeline for Yemen
- Plans for additional call forwards for beans
- The need for emergency response to unrest and food insecurity in Venezuela and Haiti
- Improved ability to respond to bean tenders for Guatemala
- The potential for beans and bean ingredients for nutrition in East Africa as a follow up to the recent trade mission to Tanzania.