Oregon Department of Agriculture Director Alexis Taylor and a group of food and drink producers are in Shanghai China on a trade mission that runs through Thursday. Taylor said this mission has very specific goals. First, ODA wants to help connect Oregon food and beverage businesses interested in exporting products into China, and make those vital business to business connections.
“The second is to do some additional market research, and really intelligence work,” Taylor said. “Get a sense for what the Chinese consumer is looking to buy, get a sense for how to connect with those Chinese consumers. They are very tech savvy, they are sophisticated and buying food in different ways then we are in the United States.”
Thanks to proposed tariffs, concerns are growing over a potential trade war between the two nations. Taylor said that make this trade mission even more important than when it was planned a year ago.
“For us, going to China now, working on those relationships, making new contacts, and really showing them that they are a valuable partner to us, is even more important. Those relationships really matter and that’s what we’re focusing on, building those relationships, [and] making new ones.”
Taylor added Oregon beef will have a heavy presence on this trip. For the first time in more than a decade Oregon can now ship beef to China, and with the country’s middle-class on track to grow by more than 160 million households in the next decade, Taylor says those consumers will look for beef, and Oregon is prepared to help meet that need.
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