USDA Foreign Ag Service hosts attaché tour of Montana

The USDA Foreign Agricultural Service, in conjunction with the Montana Department of Agriculture, will be hosting agricultural officials representing 18 countries and the European Union for a week-long tour of Montana’s agriculture industry beginning on Monday, Sept. 12. The goals of the tour are to show the attachés the diversity of American agriculture, agricultural research and innovation, conservation practices, and the beauty of Montana’s natural landscape.

“Montana’s farmers and ranchers have been feeding the world for generations,” said Governor Steve Bullock. “This is a great opportunity for these folks to see the important work being done by Montana’s farmers and ranchers, and I’m thrilled the FAS chose Montana for this year’s tour.”

“International trade is critical to U.S. agriculture,” said FAS Administrator Phil Karsting. “Tours like this showcase U.S. farms, their products and practices, and help open opportunities for American producers.”  

The tour will provide a firsthand look at agriculture in Montana, and an opportunity to learn more about topics such as production; research; marketing; international trade related to wheat, barley, pulses, cattle, and hops/microbreweries; food safety; agricultural sustainability; land management; climate change; crop insurance; and extension. The tour will include stops in Bozeman, Helena, Gold Creek, Missoula, Ronan, Whitefish, Glacier National Park, and Great Falls.

Since 1986, the FAS has organized an annual orientation tour for the foreign agricultural attachés based in Washington. The tours provide the attachés with a firsthand look at the quality and variety of American agriculture in a specific region of the country and an opportunity to discuss and learn more about agricultural research, production, policy, marketing, and trade. The tours are an effective goodwill building tool to help advance U.S. agricultural goals and objectives. The FAS last hosted a tour to Montana in 2010.

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