2013 MN Soybean SFY China Trade Mission

Minnesota Soybean Research & Promotion Council

2013 See For Yourself Trade Mission to China

March 19 to March 28

               SFY China          Beijing           Yanti         Shenzhen        Hong Kong    

Shenzhen Day 6 - Sunday March 26, 2013

After an evening flight into Shenzhen, Guangdong province, which shares its southern border with Hong Kong, we checked into the Shenzhen Shangri-La Hotel - a 5 star Hotel. It was directly across the road from the railroad station and next to the China & Hong Kong border customs. We found the staff to be very accomodating and able to converse in English as were many of the citizens of this region. It had a Champs Bar and Grill's with classic American comfort food in an bar style atmosphere with pool table, darts, and live music. It also featured a 360° Bar, Restaurant and Lounge on the upper floor with contemporary styling and panoramic views. The Lobby was massive and elegant.

The local language is Mandarin Chinese, however many of the citizens are able to converse in English. The region is on China Standard Time (UTC+8) as is all of China, as the country has only one time zone.

We ate breakfast in the hotel restaurant and it featured the most comprehensive breakfast buffet that anyone could imagine. It had an complete american buffet that included bacon, sauage, eggs, hashbrowns, fruits, breads, american ready to eat cereals, and more. Plus it offered many juice choices, coffee and teas to drink both at the American buffet and at a seperate buffet station as well. It had a seperate bread and pastry buffet that offered a considerable selection. In addition it featured an Chinese / Asian buffet that was enormous in scope of food offerings.

On his landmark 1992 "Southern Tour", Deng Xiaoping chose Shenzhen as the place to make his memorable statement: "Poverty is not Socialism: to get rich is glorious", voicing the Party's shift from Communist dogma to a pragmatic, results-driven approach to economics - and opening the gate for the start of China's financial boom. Shenzhen is in a "Special Economic Development Zone" that promotes capitalizism and it's growth is evidence of that fact.

In the 1970's Shenzhen was a simple rural hamlet and train station called Bao'an. Today the region has a population of 13 million and has been growing by about 1 million people a year. Plus an estimated 3 million live in factory dorms and await residence apartments to live in. The average age of the populous is very young at just 26 years of age and the women out number the men by a ratio of 3 to 1.

Shenzhen Day 7 - Monday March 25, 2013

On Monday morning we received a briefing in a hotel conference room by the U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF)  representatives Joel Haggard and Ming Liang. USMEF is a private nonprofit trade association working to creat new opportunities and develop existsing international markets for U.S. beef, pork, lamb and veal. USMEF activities fall into three primary areas 1) Trade Servicing which includes market intelligence, qualifying buyers and leads, facilitating contacts between suppliers and buyers, and providing technical assistance with labeling, export documentation and product claims 2) Product Promotion and Education which includes building demand thought joint promotions with leading retailers and restaurants, conducting meat schools and seminars, consumer education, advertising and public relation campaigns 3) Market Access by providing U.S. government and industry partners with market intelligence to secure, maintian and develop fair and reasonable access to international markets.

Joel and Ming covered USMEF's role in China, Domestic Livestock Production, Meat Pricing, Trade and Import Data, Retail & HRI Sector Trends and USMEF Marketing Programs in China. This was a very relevent briefing as usage of soymeal in the livestock sector has a significant impact on U.S. domestic meal values as well as export usage and values.

They shared that while Asia imports about 50% Beef and 50% Pork, China only allows imports of U.S. Pork but since the BSE scare in the U.S. years ago, U.S. beef is not allowed. Beef imports are allowed from Australia, New Zealand and many other countries around the world. Some beleive that China is using the restriction on U.S. Beef as a negotiation tool to try to get other consessions from the U.S. They shared with the group that the MN Soybean P&R Council Pork promotion budget for 2012 was $122,500 while the USMEF China Pacific Region budget is $575,000.

US pork is very competitive in the China market even though the Chinese producer pays no taxes on livestock production. About 20% of pork is slaughtered by China's single largest pork processor that is two times larger than Hormel. The slaughter plants are spotless even though there is no national inspector program. The local government is responsible for inspections of slaughter facilities and officials can go to jail if they know of an issue and don't take action. It appears that instead of education they use sanctions and jail time as enforcement tools.

As a condition for China to enter the World Trade Organization the United States insisted that the agreement included additional conditions for Pork, Wheat and Citrus. One part of the agreement was that China would recognize all U.S. Meat Plants that process Poultry, Beef, and Pork under USDA inspection as having acceptable quality standards to meet export - import criteria. This has proved to be a very beneficial consideration of the agreemnt as China has no need to inspect and approve individual meat processing plants.

After lunch we went to the Shenzhen HIGREEN International Agricultural Products Logistics Park and the Ping Hu Food Whole Sale Market which is also the largest frozen market in the Shenzhen area. While there we saw vendors who were distributing fresh vegitables and fruits of all kinds. This included sweet corn, water mellons, other mellons, apples, pears, oranges and other items. We walked through the cooler buildings that had hall ways between the coolers for venders to showcase the meat products that they had available to end users such as restaurants and retailers. We saw boxed meats of all kinds imaginable, including pork hooves, pork ears, pork stomachs, and chicken paws all from the United States. Some of the companies boxes that we saw included Swift, Perdue Farms Inc., Mountaire, Sanderson Farms Inc., Abbyland Pork Pack of Curtiss WI - pork ribs; Amick Farms of Atlanta GA - chicken paws; and Viking Boat - sandwich hams. International companies boxed meat that we saw included the Marifrig Group of Brazil - frozen boneless beef shank with heel muscle; West Fleisch of Germany - frozen pork riblets;  Person of Holland - frozen pork breastbones; Danish Crown - diced pork cubes.

Visit Wal-Mart Club store

Visit Shenzhen Xiang market (meat, fish, vegetables)

Tian Hong Retail

Visit Coco Park Mall

Dinner at Super Steak


Shenzen & Pearl River Dalta - Day 8 March 26

Visit aquaculture farm and aqua feed mills in Pearl River Delta

Lunch with aquaculture farm and aqua feed mills


Machong Port - Pearl River Delta

We traveled west of Shenzhan to the Pearl River Delta Region to visit a family owned set of business ventures. This family had a number of business related to agriculture that included feed sales and distribution, aquaculture farm, soybean crush plants and ownership in grain docks on the Pearl River.

We visited their bagged feed distribution location, fish aquaculture ponds and port facility on the Pearl River. The Pearl River Delta is the world's 4th busiest port after Hong Hong, Shanghai and Singapore.

To view the presentation we were shown regarding the Machong and Chiwan ports open this link.

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