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Taiwan, Idaho Sign Wheat Agreement

by Pat McCoy
Capital Press, June 15, 2007

BOISE - The Taiwan Flour Mills Association will purchase 1.7 million metric tons of U.S. wheat worth over $425 million in the next two years, part of which will come from Idaho.

The purchase of hard white wheat was announced during a press conference in Gov. Butch Otter's office here June 11.

At the same press conference, the Taiwanese, Otter and the Idaho Wheat Commission signed a letter of intent in the spirit of mutual understanding and cooperation.

The island nation was the ninth-largest market for all U.S. wheat in 2006, the delegation noted.

The TFMA delegation visited Idaho as part of an agricultural trade goodwill mission that toured Washington, D.C., and will also visit South Dakota, Montana and Oregon before returning home.

Yin-chin Yang, TFMA supervisor, said this was the second time an association delegation visited Idaho since 1998. Purchases of wheat followed each time.

"I am confident that this mission will greatly enhance the mutually beneficial agricultural trade relations between our two sides," Yang said.

Idaho has been selling wheat to Taiwan's flour millers since the 1950s, said Gordon Gallup, vice chairman of the Idaho Wheat Commission.

"We value your friendship. We want to continue to build that trade relationship and the trust it represents," Gallup said. "TFMA is a committed user of our wheat."

Idaho has a sister-state agreement with Taipei, said Otter. Taiwan is Idaho's fourth-largest market for wheat, and seventh-largest for agricultural products in general. Idaho exports over 50 percent of its wheat, making the agreement particularly important for growers here.

Pat McCoy
is based in Boise, Idaho. Taiwan, Idaho Sign Wheat Agreement
Capital Press, June 15, 2007

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