South Korea’s Largest Feed Miller Visits Illinois Corn Crop
IL Corn hosted grain buyers from Nonghyup Feed Inc. (NOFI) on June 3, 2021, primarily to showcase Illinois’s corn crop. NOFI is the largest cooperative feed mill in South Korea. Their main goals were to examine crop conditions as well as communicate with local farmers and company representatives regarding the changes in supply and demand of corn. It also sparked the opportunity to build closer business relationships with U.S. feed and food grain industry professionals.
NOFI is the world’s 8th largest cooperative with 2.4 million farmer members and is based in Seoul, South Korea. The company operates as a subsidiary of NongHyup Agribusiness Group Inc. NOFI is a crucial business unit of the National Agricultural Cooperatives Federation (NACF). The company, including the NACF, bought 2,597 thousand-metric-tons of corn in 2020, with 100% of the corn being imported. That is roughly 102,000,000 bushels of corn.
Consistency in the supply of corn was a concern of NOFI because of the large quantities purchased. Their contracts are planned and consist of buying quantities of corn within a period of 6 months to a year. Illinois corn farmers are vital to ensuring exports are fulfilled in a timely manner. Access to waterways and rail roads creates an advantage for exporters to continue to buy corn from Illinois.
Mr. Yungchuk Bang and Mr. Sangyum Baek are the first trade team to visit our home office in Bloomington, Illinois since the Fall of 2019. They are also the first trade team the U.S. Grains Council has met with since early March of 2020. This a great sign that normalcy in communication with global exporters and importers is on the horizon. Their visit consisted of tours through grain trading houses, corn farms, and local river elevators. They also consulted with representatives from Cargill and Archer Daniels Midland to discuss expectations on supply and demand of corn.
At the end of their visit, they were able to say a few words to the Illinois Corn Marketing Board. They admired Illinois’s rich soil and commended Illinois farmers for annually producing a substantial corn crop. The U.S. Grains Council and all Illinois corn farmers, hope to reassure NOFI of the ability and commitment of the United States as a reliable corn producer and by-products supplier.