USGC sees Asian interest in DDGS

By Susanne Retka Schill | January 12, 2009
Web exclusive posted Jan. 20, 2009, at 1:19 p.m. CST

The U.S Grains Council sees opportunities for U.S. distillers dried grains with solubles this year. In its year-end market analysis, discussed in the current weekly Global Update available online, the USGC pointed to Taiwan in particular.

"DDGS is one of the best alternative feed ingredients available and could aid Taiwanese producers during a time of high feed prices," said Clover Chang, USGC director in Taiwan. The country relies almost entirely on feed grain imports to meet domestic demands, and in response to high prices, Taiwan's Council of Agriculture has revised feed formulations using alternative feed ingredients such as DDGS. "[Producers] have complained that the price of corn in the United States has decreased by more than 50 percent, while the prices of corn and completed feeds domestically remain quite high," he said. In 2008, DDGS imports in Taiwan reached nearly 230,000 tons from January to October, with a 95 percent U.S. market share.

Overall, U.S. DDGS exports to Southeast Asia more than doubled in the 2007-'08 marketing year, compared to the previous year, according to the USDA's Foreign Agricultural Service. The USGC said the increase demonstrates the effectiveness of the organization's efforts in the region where through education seminars, feeding trials, promotional events and one-on-one consultations, USGC representatives work with importers and producers to ensure that proper handling practices and DDGS inclusion ratios are followed to achieve the best results.

Adel Yusupov, USGC director in Southeast Asia, said as an example, hog farmers have raised concerns and are reluctant to increase DDGS levels in gestation rations. The USGC shared results from a recent study by the National Corn to Ethanol Research Center which found the levels of mycotoxins in DDGS were below the maximum levels allowed by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. "Our one-on-one consultations help to resolve any uncertainties about the use of DDGS," Yusupov said. "The NCERC study brings certainty for those who still question the safety of the product."

The USGC also follows market trends in a weekly market-perspectives report available online. The week of Jan. 15, the USGC reported that buying demand for containerized shipments of DDGS to Asia appeared to have returned to normal levels, due to a drop in container shipping rates and the clearing of high-priced inventories held by major Asian importers at the close of 2008.