ARLINGTON, Virginia — Algerians enjoy their bread and couscous. The North African nation is one of the world’s largest wheat importers. To help overcome an historical preference for French soft bread wheat, U.S. Wheat Associates (USW) will bring two officials from the Algerian Office of Cereals (OAIC) to the United States July 25 to Aug. 1, 2015, to learn about U.S. durum and bread wheat crop quality and the U.S. wheat export supply system. USW worked with the California Wheat Commission (CWC), the North Dakota Wheat Commission (NDWC) and the Minnesota Wheat Research and Promotion Council (MWRPC) to organize this team.
“There is an opportunity to foster demand for U.S. wheat to blend with Algerian standard flour,” said Ian Flagg, USW’s Regional Director for the Middle East, East and North Africa, who will travel with the team. “The goal of this visit is to demonstrate the versatility and quality of U.S. bread wheat classes and reinforce the value of U.S. durum wheats for semolina.”
The team starts its visit in Washington, DC, with meetings at USDA and USW. Janice Cooper, executive director of the California Wheat Commission, will join the team there to review Desert Durum® quality and supply. The schedule will continue in North Dakota and Minnesota where the team will see each all the components of the supply chain for both durum and bread wheats, including farm and grain elevator tours. They will also meet with university wheat breeders and get an in-depth look at the U.S. wheat transportation systems.
Flagg said bringing OAIC officials to the United States complements USW’s trade service and technical assistance in Algeria. That work, conducted with funds from USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) market development programs, plays a pivotal role in proving the value and comparable performance of U.S. wheat to produce flour for baguette bread and other products as well as semolina for couscous in Algeria.
USW is the industry’s market development organization working in more than 100 countries. Its mission is to “develop, maintain, and expand international markets to enhance the profitability of U.S. wheat producers and their customers.” USW activities are made possible through producer checkoff dollars managed by 19 state wheat commissions and cost-share funding provided by USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service.
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