California industry members participate in trade mission to the Philippines

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The Philippines Trade Mission led by Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) Administrator Daniel Whitley is officially underway after arriving in Manila today. Whitley is joined by representatives from 29 U.S. agribusinesses and agricultural organizations and 10 state departments of agriculture. The goal is to develop stronger trade relationships in the eighth largest market for US agricultural exports.

“The USDA Trade Mission to the Philippines will provide many opportunities for the United States and the Philippines,” Whitley said. stated in a press release. “I am confident that the coming days will yield mutually beneficial results to help expand trade, increase collaboration on key issues impacting agriculture in our two countries, and ultimately strengthen food security for Philippines. We have a diverse group of American agribusiness and industry leaders who join us in Manila who can provide local buyers with reliable, high-quality, sustainably produced American food and agricultural products.

FAS staff will provide participants with detailed market information during the trip and facilitate business meetings between delegates and local businesses. Three MOU signing ceremonies are also planned during the trade mission, which will include multiple site visits. Over the past five years, US agricultural exports have averaged more than $3 billion a year. Several California-based organizations are participating in the trade mission to the Philippines, which runs July 18-21. Representatives from the California Blueberry Commission (CBC), MEM Fairway, Inc., Flying Horse Services, Redwood International and the California Milk Advisory Board are all present.

“Through our presence at this trade mission, we hope to explore the various market opportunities that may be available to our industry members in the Philippine market,” said Elizabeth Carranza, CBC’s Director of Business and Technical Affairs. “Having gained official market access to ship blueberries from California to the Philippines in 2020, we believe there are many opportunities that present significant growth potential for our industry in this new market.”

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