USA- A team of wheat buyers from Nigeria and Kenya recently toured the United States, learning about the supply chain for hard red winter, hard red spring, and hard white wheat, according to a report by World Grain.
According to the US Wheat Associates (USW) which was guiding the visiting team, Nigeria is an established customer and the fourth-largest importer of US wheat while Kenya is a developing market that has seen a steady increase in wheat foods consumption.
During a visit to the IGP Institute at Kansas State University, the team learned about technical training and assistance programs.
Additionally, a commercial flour mill in McPherson, Kansas, US, was part of the visit, as well as a stop at the Federal Grain Inspection Service (FGIS) in Kansas City, Missouri, US.
Before Kansas, the team met with wheat farmers and received an update from the Northern Crops Institute (NCI) in North Dakota.
The Minnesota portion included meetings with Minnesota Wheat, grain traders at CHS, and a tour of port loading facilities in Duluth, Minnesota, US.
“Our goal was to show them the US supply chain,” said Chad Weigand, USW regional director for Sub-Saharan Africa. “We also wanted to explain how the quality of wheat grown in the states is monitored through the inspection process.
These visits are very important to customers in Africa who want to be assured they are getting the quality they want. We have competition in these markets, and face-to-face visits go a long way in providing trust and confidence in wheat from the US.”
The USW says that the United States has been the top wheat supplier to Nigeria in two of the past five years and in 2021-22, US wheat exports to Nigeria, which has the largest economy and population in Africa, increased to 1.63 million tonnes, with the US market share at 30%.
On the other hand, Kenya is seeing considerable growth in wheat demand due to increased urbanization, USW said.
Most of the wheat flour in Kenya is used for home baking of chapati (flat bread) and new products are often introduced and branded for specific end-uses: chapati flour, mandazi flour, self-rising flour, and others.