China Now Importing US Grown Sorghum

Published 10/24 2013 03:57PM

Updated 10/24 2013 06:22PM

"There is a lot more demand for sorghum today versus say, what there was even a year ago."

Florentino Lopez, Executive Director of United Sorghum Checkoff Program, said that though this is just one of many marketplaces they've opened up, it's a big one.

"This is really large," said Lopez. "As you look at it from a perspective overall, it's kind of interesting that China would go from a marketplace of basically not buying sorghum to buying 10% to 20% of the US sorghum crop."

The new demand from China stems from the country's need to feed a rapidly growing population with more sources of protein.

And though sorghum is grown in China, the demand there still far exceeds the supply.

"Over all, more than anything, it's looking at it from a livestock perspective, and so they really need more and more coarse grains," said Lopez.

As to whether this will encourage more farmers to switch to sorghum, Lopez said it really all depends on their bottom line. 

"Producers are looking where they can make money. Like anything else, they need to be as profitable as possible, and this just offers them another alternative crop for them to utilize."

However, Lopez says, getting more farmers to grow their grains wouldn't be a bad thing. 

"Definitely we hope so. That's one of the goals that we would have."

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