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International Trade Committee Meeting Minutes – May 7, 2012


Westin Crown Center
Kansas City, MO
Monday, May 7, 2012
12:00 Noon CDT
Members Present:
Jack Cwach, ADM Milling Co.
David Silver, Didion Milling, Inc.
Rod Geiger, Bartlett Milling Co.
Jim Madich, Horizon Milling LLC/Cargill

Other Members:
Alex Sune, Horizon Mililng LLC/Cargill
Dallas Anthony, Bunge Milling Inc.

Members Absent:
Wade Ellis, Bunge Milling, Inc.
Bruce King, Cereal Food Processors, Inc.
William Liska, Grain Millers, Inc.
Don Brown, ConAgra Mills
Steve Wickes, Agricor, Inc.
Dan Fetherston, SEMO Milling LLC

NAMA Staff:
Mary Waters, President (by phone)
Paul Green, Staff Liaison
Joseph Holahan, Legal Counsel, Morris, Manning, Martin, LLP (by phone)

1. Call to Order – International Trade Committee Vice Chairman, Jack Cwach, ADM Milling Co.
The Vice Chairman called the meeting to order at 12:15 PM.
a. Introductions – Wade Ellis, Bunge Milling, Inc.
b. Antitrust Guidelines – Joe Holahan, Legal Counsel
Mr. Holahan read the NAMA guidelines on antitrust and reminded the participants that all NAMA meetings are conducted under those guidelines.
2. Administration
a. Approval of Minutes – Paul Green, NAMA
The October 7, 2011 minutes were distributed to the members prior to the meeting and reviewed. There were no corrections. The minutes were approved as distributed.
3. Items for Discussion
a. Food Aid in Farm Bill and 2012/2013 Appropriations
The briefing sheet on the farm bill  status was discussed and the committee was asked to reaffirm our positions on a. LRP and b. the safebox and monetization.  The ITC verified the briefing sheet does reflect NAMA’s position on those topics.
b. NAMA FMD budget and marketing plan for FY 2012.
Mr. Green called the Committee’s attention to the trip reports from the two Africa trips last month and the complexities of both the WFP and FAQR/USAID  discussions regarding the manufacture of products containing dairy proteins (SuperCereal Plus , or CSB++, or CSB 14).  Discussion centered on the difficulty in  assessing the demand for this product in light of its limited target population and the budgetary vagaries of both food aid and WFP’s budgets.

The Committee reconfirmed the accuracy of NAMA’s statement to WFP and Tufts University that without a clearer guarantee of ongoing demand, it was unlikely that US manufacturers of Fortified and Blended Foods would find it a compelling business model to either retrofit current operations or build new plant and equipment to manufacture these products with a use limited to treatment of MAM (Moderate Acute Malnutrition) in under 2 children.

c. Discussion of next steps for pliot project on container shipment of NAMA products and authorization to advance the pilot.
The Committee discussed the findings of the two trips regarding the feasibility of using container shipments of super bags or totes of a CSB type product for overseas blending and/or packing as an alternative supply chain for the CSB w/animal protein product.  During discussion, Mr. Geiger noted that regardless of the eventual outcome of the pilot or the feasibility of the supply chain concept, it is valuable for NAMA to be seen as an instigator of innovation.  It will mitigate any prospect of the industry being seen as resistant to change that might come from hesitancy  to invest in US manufacture of the CSB 14 product.

There was also discussion of the scope of the pilot and whether to continue to include a whole container, bulk shipment option.  While that ‘blown in’ bladder option is being used for some wheat flour shipments in containers, it was noted that it required container tippers and pneumatics on arrival that would  probably not be available for the pilot shipments.  The ITC also considered whather to include flour in the pilot and there was support to include it, particularly to test the insect infestation control opportunites, with the feasitility of tote shipments to be determined.

The Committee agreed that staff should proceed to the next steps of putting the pilot project proposal on paper, examining who would be logical partners and begin vetting it among important thought leaders to move it to the next steps.  It was agreed that the scope would include side by side shipments of CSB in containers 1/ as currently done as a control, 2/ CSB in current bags in containers with a sealed liner and 3/ CSB in totes lined with a Grain Pro or other technology liner sealed to prevent moisture and pest infestation.  Likewise, a flour pilot would have Shipment in containers 1/ as currently for control.  2/ In current bags with a single container liner sealed for insect and moisture protection and 3/ possibly shipment in lined totes as per CSB.

ACTION ITEM: 1  Mr. Green to prepare a draft pilot project proposal for consideration by the ITC and eventual vetting with potential partners.

4. Information items – Discussion if requested
a. International Biotechnology Issues Management
Mr. Green noted the continued issues related to individual destination countries rejection of biotech products and WFP’s extraordinary efforts to procure non biotech foods.  The official US position is that such rejections are non-science based and should not bee allowed, but the practicality is that they do try to accommodate such requirements while trying to convince the county to change policy.
b. Food Aid Quality Review Follow up plans
The Committee discussed engagement with the Tufts staff including a planned dinner with their principals on Tuesday night.
c. WBSCM issues – No issues brought up.
d. Mr. Green noted a continuing discussion inside CCC regarding the elimination of the DACO (and KCCO) and the performance of the procurement function by normal USDA procurement staff.
5. Other Business
6. Adjournment
The meeting was adjourned at 3:00  PM.
Respectfully submitted,

Paul Green
NAMA International Trade Consultant

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