USDA data shows U.S. agriculture and food exports in 2021 totaled $177 billion, up 18% from 2020 and nearly 15% above the previous record set in 2014. American Farm Bureau Federation senior economist Veronica Nigh explains the circumstances behind the record.

“Of course, rising commodity prices and rising global inflation have contributed to this. About two-thirds of this increase can be attributed to price increases, and then about one-third to increases in the quantity exported. So definitely a lot of price action, but additional products are also shipping.

Nigh says the record comes despite several challenges in 2021, some of which continued into 2022.

“We continue to have supply chain issues, we continue to have transportation issues. The disruptions we see in Canada are sure to accumulate. In the United States, we export approximately $24 million worth of agricultural products every day through this Detroit border crossing. So the more it accumulates, the more difficult it will be. So I hope, of course, that we continue to have record exports in 2022, but there’s still a lot of headwinds for exporters to meet those targets.

And China has not fully met its obligations under the phase one agreement, leaving untapped export potential.

“The phase one deal ended at the end of 2021. We saw them miss their overall import level of around $13 billion over the 2020-2021 range. So while we had record exports to that country, they could have been higher, and we see that reflected in the market share data. The US market share has yet to recover from the trade dispute we had with the Chinese. »


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