Rice Farming

 - Rice Producers Forum -

Western hemisphere rice trade
to gather in Miami

By Dwight Roberts
President and Chief Executive Officer

Two years ago when the inaugural Rice Congress of the Americas was held in Cancun, Mexico, it was thought that this event would rally support from throughout the Western Hemisphere.

These goals were accomplished again at the 2008 conference in Porte Alegre, Brazil, where what was thought to be focused on the Americas actually piqued the interests of rice traders and industry representatives from around the world. This year’s May 12-14 event in Miami will be the largest yet, with representatives from Vietnam, Pakistan, Switzerland, Thailand, India and South Africa already registered.

During the short time that this conference has been in existence, it has become the important rice-marketing event in the world by bringing such a wide variety of the international rice trade together with key issues influencing the Western Hemisphere at the heart of the schedule.

Long a dream of the U.S. Rice Producers Association, the conference became a reality in 2007 thanks to the support of The Rice Trader publication. Together, this partnership is dedicated to making the event a priority for all participants in the years ahead. With a powerful lineup of knowledgeable speakers and essential topics, Miami is the place to be if the market conditions, policies and trends shaping the most important markets for U.S. rice are important to you.

Participants from 25 countries have registered
As at these types of events, networking is always of importance. Only in Miami can you discuss price outlook and volatility with the Brazilians, query Mercosur and Andean traders on what the market holds in store for 2009 and 2010 or determine where the opportunities lie for increasing rice production in the Americas. This year’s conference will have a strong focus on weather conditions around the world that affect rice production, as well as outlooks from a wide variety of specialists on rice-specific issues.

Some 200 or more participants are expected to attend and registrations have been received from more than 25 countries. Rice millers, grain merchandisers, exporters, traders, brokers, freight brokers, commodity inspectors, procurement officials, shipping industry, trade finance specialists, cargo insurance, producer organization representatives, research specialists and government officials will contribute to a record attendance to discuss a global agenda with an emphasis on the Americas.

Different marketing approach and focus
Ten years ago, the U.S. Rice Producers Association decided to take a different approach to the importance of relationships within the rice industry and Western Hemisphere markets. We realized long ago that the Americas would evolve to become the most important destinations for long-grain rice. Thanks to research in the early years, we understood that consumers in Mexico, Central America and many other countries required a different marketing approach and focus than in the past. By capitalizing on this knowledge, the U.S. Rice Producers Association has grown into what is considered to be the most effective rice organization in Latin America. Continuing to serve the rice industry remains the over-arching goal, and this conference is a keystone in that strategy.

The culmination of the lessons learned is the Rice Congress of the Americas conference that will serve the region and the world for years to come.

Please visit www.trtamericas.com for more information and registration. We look forward to seeing you in Miami.

For more about USRPA, visit www.usriceproducers.com.