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Selling Oregon agriculture on its home turf

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Buyers of agricultural products are coming to Oregon this summer from several key export markets in Asia and beyond:

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The Oregon Department of Agriculture often takes agricultural products overseas to the buyer, but it’s just as important to bring the buyer to Oregon. That’’s what will happen over the next several weeks according to ODA’s Amanda Welker:

WELKER:  “Busy time bringing in buyers, especially in from Asia, to look at the crops. It’s really important for them to understand what the crop looks like in the field, and understand the harvest and the production process cycle. They want to know what that product is like before it gets over there to Asia.”  :16

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Summer is a great time to show off Oregon agriculture– good weather, crops in full production, and willing growers who are happy to give the international buyers a tour:

WELKER:  “They work so hard all year for this harvest. I think for them to show literally the fruits of their labor, it’s pretty exciting. To share that and to have all these people traveling thousands of miles to come meet with them, it’s a pretty rewarding experience on both sides.”  :14

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ODA will facilitate a number of tours for buying teams in the next couple of months, as they come in from Japan, Korea, China, India, Southeast Asia, and the Middle East. Of particular interest to the buyers are Oregon berries, tree fruit, and hazelnuts. The best thing about these inbound trade missions is the opportunity to bring buyer and seller together….and nothing sells Oregon products like Oregon itself. In Salem, I’m Bruce Pokarney.

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WELKER says inbound trade missions allow buyers to ask a lot of questions, see the process of growing the crop, and to start building a relationship with the producer or processor:

“Relationships are so important. It gives them the opportunity to have that one-on-one conversation and build that relationship with the farmer and the processor here in Oregon.”  :10

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WELKER says nothing sells Oregon agriculture like Oregon itself. That’s why the inbound trade missions are so successful:

“Buyers really like coming to Oregon. It’s a beautiful state. Where else do you get to show them cherries and they get to stop at a waterfall and see the Columbia Gorge on the way. So they kind of fall in love with this place, and then when they see the product that we have to offer them, it makes it even better.”  :15

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