27 Feb, 2018
As trade relations between countries improve, there is significant support obtained from these trade partners in various segments of the economy. US expect more export of protein meal such as soybean and DDG obtained from corn to India besides reduction in agricultural tariff. US under Secretary for Agriculture Ted McKinney said, “We do believe it will benefit Indian farmers and consumers to be looking at more purchases of DDG and soybean meal and number of other products.” Soymeal and DDG obtained from Genetically Modified crops are ‘productive’ source of protein, and the entire world including Europe and Japan had concluded that DDG was not ‘living mala-fide organism.’ GM cotton seed meal was ‘pretty good’ source of protein and being used in India.
McKinney said US saw great opportunity in the supply of protein meal to India. “We hear it from India’s own corporate community. Good examples might be feed-meals. They tell us they need more protein, mostly DDGs, which is yellow part of the corn comes during ethanol process in US. Your own farmers want to produce their own poultry, dairy, beef. And we are happy to provide ingredients, highly nutritious protein.”
McKinney said the total export from India to US in 2017 stood at $2.6 billion while that from US to India in the same year was $1.6 billion. Seeking lower agriculture tariffs for American items would be in best interest of Indian consumers as well as farmers. “Based on our experiences, tariffs are not the best way to live up farmers. We do believe (lowering) it will benefit Indian farmers and consumers, who are looking at more purchase of DDG and soybean meal and number of other products.”
US had stopped subsidies to its farmers and tariffs were problematic most of the times. “We do not give subsidies anymore despite what many people think around the world. We have safety nets, insurance net. That is self-funded by farmers. But tariff is not good thing if you are in free trade and if you want highest quality, lowest cost product,” he said.