Quarles: KDA helps Ky. farmers, ag businesses sell their products in international markets

Published 2:43 pm Thursday, September 29, 2016

LOUISVILLE (September 13, 2016) — Kentucky farmers can reap tremendous benefits from international trade, and the Kentucky Department of Agriculture (KDA) is prepared to help, Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles said today at the Kentucky International Trade Summit, a forum for business leaders, trade practitioners, and public officials.
“Exports create thousands of jobs and millions of dollars of revenue for Kentucky’s economy,” Commissioner Quarles said. “But there’s still plenty of room to grow. The KDA’s marketing staff helps Kentucky farmers, businesses, and foresters clear barriers to entry into foreign markets. We also host inbound trade missions so the world can see what Kentucky has to offer.”
“We’re excited that Commissioner Quarles attended the Trade Summit,” said Ed Webb, president and CEO of the World Trade Center-Kentucky (WTC-KY). “Kentucky’s varied agriculture industry is a key component of the state’s economy and accounts for a large percentage of our exports. The Commissioner’s devotion to bringing more agribusiness jobs to the Commonwealth is essential to maintaining its future economic stability.”
Kentucky agricultural exports totaled more than $1.46 billion in 2015, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS), ranking 27th in the nation. The KDA works with the FAS as well as numerous other public and private organizations to help Kentucky businesses sell their products in other countries.
Bourbon whiskey was Kentucky’s leading agricultural export in 2015 with sales of $310.6 million, followed by pure-bred horses for breeding ($146.6 million), chemical/allied preparations ($115.6 million), and wooden casks ($103.3 million).
For more information about the KDA’s international marketing program, go to kyagr.com/marketing/international-marketing.html.

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