Another record year for US farm exports

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grain barge
Grain barge on the Ohio River. (Farm and Dairy file photo)

WASHINGTON — The American agricultural sector posted its best export year ever in 2022 with international sales of U.S. farm and food products reaching $196 billion, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced Feb. 10.

Final 2022 trade data released last week by the Commerce Department shows that U.S. agricultural exports increased 11%, or $19.5 billion, from the previous record set in 2021. 

“This second consecutive year of record-setting agricultural exports, coupled with a record $160.5 billion in net farm income in 2022, demonstrates the success of the Biden-Harris Administration’s efforts to create new and better markets for America’s agricultural producers and businesses,” Vilsack said, in a statement. 

The value of sales increased in all of the U.S.’s top 10 agricultural export markets — China, Mexico, Canada, Japan, the European Union, South Korea, Taiwan, the Philippines, Colombia and Vietnam — with sales in seven of the 10 markets setting new records. 

“While we remain committed to our established customer base around the world, we are also setting our sights on new growth opportunities in places like Africa, Latin America, the Middle East and Southeast Asia,” Vilsack said. “Overall, there were 30 markets where U.S. exports exceeded $1 billion in 2022 — an increase from 27 markets in 2021 — demonstrating the broad global appeal of American-grown products.”

The top commodities exported by the U.S. in 2022 were soybeans, corn, beef, dairy, cotton and tree nuts, which together comprised more than half of U.S. agricultural export value. International sales of many U.S. products — including soybeans, cotton, dairy, beef, ethanol, poultry, soybean meal, distilled spirits and distillers’ grains — reached record values.

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