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Agrimarketing : June 2008
June 2008 ¦ AgriMarketing 35 We spent the last few days in Poland, beginning in the cultural capi- tol of Krakow, and then visiting the capitol city of Warsaw. We visited two farms and also met with the Ministry of Agriculture and many business representatives, where the GMO debate raged on. We found that Polish farms are generally very small. I had never seen land farmed in “strips” like we saw in Poland. The range of tech- nology is great, with some farmers owning new equipment and others still using horse-drawn plows. I sent audio reports each day from the trip and actually joined our morning show live two different times while I was there. Cell phone technology is pretty amazing! To lis- ten to the archived programs, go to: www.illinoisagexpo.com. TRICIA BRAID TERRY RFD RADIO NETWORK Bloomington, IL Surprising, incredible, comfortable, cathartic, memorable, and exhilarat- ing: these are all words that describe my experience in Vietnam. Written words cannot do justice to this experience. We visited all the hot spots you remember: Hanoi, DaNang and Saigon. Vietnam is experiencing a ris- ing middle class. The population is nearly 86 million in a land area equivalent to New Mexico. Nearly 60% are 30 years old or younger. This young, dynamic populace contin- ues to stretch their capitalistic wings into the world economy. Vietnam recently joined the World Trade Organization and has since grown to be the world’s second largest exporter of rice. The country’s economy is growing consis- tently at 7% to 8%, and is expected to double within the next decade, sec- ond in Asia only to China. That means great things to the U.S. agricultural producer. As incomes rise in Vietnam, so does their purchasing power. And as the communist run government allows more foreign investment, interest in imported prod- ucts and commodities grows. The U.S. farmer has a good reputation in Viet- nam for producing a high quality, but currently expensive product. Our best opportunities for ag exports to Viet- nam include soybean meal, wheat products, corn and livestock genetics. But our more than 20 year absence from their economy means we have some hurdles to overcome. The opportunity for travel to Vietnam came to me as Radio News Manager for Illinois Farm Bureau’s (IFB) RFD Radio Network . I called in from Vietnam to our talk show each day, and sent recorded reports for other program segments. I also co-authored blog entries that chroni- cled the trip while in country (Feb 28-Mar 10), and documented our activities in photographs. This was IFB’s 8th Market Study Tour. AM Tricia Braid Terry
July August 2008
Canadian Agribusiness Employer Guide 08