trade mission

Tribal Ag Trade Mission a First

Dan Agri-Business, This Land of Ours, Trade, USDA-FAS

It’s the first USDA trade mission of its kind. That’s coming up on This Land of Ours.

trade mission

USDA conducts its inaugural agricultural trade mission centered on expanding global market access for tribal farm and food producers later this month. Rod Bain has more.

Listen to Rod Bain’s This Land Of Ours program here.

USDA Embarks on First-ever Trade Mission Focused on Indigenous and Native Nations Products

(USDA-FAS/WASHINGTON D.C./June 5, 2024) — For the first time, the U.S. Department of Agriculture will conduct an agribusiness trade mission focused on Indian Country and Native Hawaiian Community businesses, products and priorities, as well as amplifying collaboration and knowledge sharing with First Nations in Canada. USDA Under Secretary for Trade and Foreign Agricultural Affairs Alexis M. Taylor will lead this historic trade mission to Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, June 17-20. She will be joined by 15 tribal agribusinesses and 13 Native Nations agricultural leaders. 

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“This trade mission will be a conduit for enhancing the already existing trade network between agriculturalists belonging to Canada and U.S. Native Nations, as well as the Native Hawaiian Community,” said Under Secretary Taylor. “USDA is proud to be collaborating with the Intertribal Agricultural Council and the Department of the Interior’s Office of Native Hawaiian Relations to bring forward more Native Nations farmers and agribusinesses into exporting and foreign market diversification.” 

Indigenous food production reflects the rich traditions of Native people and continues to be a dynamic component of both U.S. and Canadian agriculture. For Native Nations’ food and farm products, Canada is a growth market with tremendous export potential. Canada consistently ranks among the top markets for U.S. agricultural product exports, representing one of our most significant and reliable trading partners. Total U.S. exports of agricultural and related products to Canada totaled $28.2 billion in 2023. Recent data from the USDA Census of Agriculture suggests that American Indian/Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian agricultural production contributes $8 billion annually to the U.S. domestic food economy. 

“Community is an ever-present characteristic of American agriculture, but especially for Native food and agri-systems,” said Taylor. “USDA and the Intertribal Agricultural Council share a commitment to promoting the authenticity and enriched nature of growing, harvesting and consuming indigenous foods and agricultural products. Other markets around the world also recognize this uniqueness in American agriculture and are interested in importing these high-quality products.” 

In addition to business-to-business meetings, trade mission delegates will take part in high-level policy discussions on important issues facing indigenous producers and agricultural communities in the United States and Canada. These engagements will bring together leaders and experts from indigenous communities in both countries. 

On the trade mission, Under Secretary Taylor will be joined by Minnesota Lieutenant Governor Peggy Flanagan, Intertribal Agricultural Council Board President Harlan Beaulieu and officials from the Maine, North Carolina and Oregon Departments of Agriculture. 

Also joining the Under Secretary are leaders and representatives from the following tribes: 

  1. Ayittatoba, Kansas City, Mo.
  2. Tocabe Foods, Denver, Colo.
  3. Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma, Durrant, Okla.
  4. Columbia River Inter-tribal Fish Commission, Portland, Ore.
  5. Fort Belknap Indian Community, Harlem, Mont.
  6. Iowa Tribe of Kansas and Nebraska, White Cloud, Kan.
  7. Mesa Grande Business Development Corporation, an arm of the Mesa Grande Band of Mission Indians – Golden Eagle Farm, Ramona, Calif.
  8. Rincon Band of Luiseño Indians, Valley Center, Calif.

Additionally, representatives from the following businesses will be …..

Read the full news release from USDA Foreign Agricultural Service.