45% of U.S. Soybeans Crops Are Exported To China

Local Farmer Visited By Soybean Crop Buyers From China

By Maureen Mespell
By John W. Davis

September 19, 2011 Updated Sep 19, 2011 at 10:43 PM EDT

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Indiana’s NewsCenter) – When you drive down I-69. You are sure to see two things... corn and soybeans.

That's exactly why 20 soybean buyers from China stopped by the Wyss Family Farm on Yoder Road in Allen County Monday.

Indiana's NewsCenter went along for the tour to learn the economic impact of exporting soybeans.

According to the Indiana Soybean Alliance, 45% of all soybeans grown in the United States are exported to China.

Indiana Soybean Alliance Executive Director Jane Stevens said since China's economy is still growing, it is a great time to be a soybean farmer in Indiana.

The Chinese soybean buyer delegation making a stop in Fort Wayne is a big deal.

The delegation is on a Midwest Crop Tour, where they will visit Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, North Dakota and Minnesota.

Although the delegation was small in numbers with only 20 people, they represented 90% of China's soybean buying power.

"China only produce very little soybean production so we have to import," said Chinatex Research Manager Xu Qiaoping, who is a member of the Chinese Soybean Delegation.

"And U.S. have big big soybean production and a small size of population," Qiaoping continued.

Chinese buyers like Qiaoping told Indiana's NewsCenter their number one concern is price.

Number two is quality, in which they look for soybeans with a high protein and high oil count.

Meanwhile, Chinese buyers said they would prefer to buy their soybeans from the United States.

However, if U.S. prices are not competitive they are willing to buy their soybeans from Brazil.

The increase in soybean demand can be attributed to economic growth.

"The world is growing. We have a lot of hungry people in the world that want food and we have a lot of people making more money in the world that want better foods," said Indiana Soybean Alliance Executive Director Jane Stevens.

That means as people earn more money, they want to eat better and meat is a stable of the middle class diet.

Meanwhile, crushed soybeans are the main source of protein for farm animals that are raised for human consumption.

"So they want our corn and soybeans to improve their diets," Stevens explained.

Since price is the number one concern of Chinese soybean buyers, Indiana farmers must remain competitive.

Wyss Farms Enterprises Owner Andy Wyss told Indiana's NewsCenter his advantage is having access to high-tech equipment.

Wyss said he is using GPS to help plot exact location for fertilization, which should lead to more efficiency and higher crop yields.

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