USTR on Export Status and China Approves 2 More GMOs
**Maintaining the duty-free status on U.S. Ag exports to Mexico and Canada is one of the key objectives for U.S. representatives preparing to begin renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement.
That's according to a list of goals by the U.S. Trade Representative, and welcome news to the U.S. agriculture sector, which sells about $19 billion worth of corn, soy, wheat, dairy, pork, beef, and other farm commodities to Mexico annually.
The 18-page Summary also highlights the need to "eliminate non-tariff barriers to U.S. Ag exports" and "promote greater regulatory compatibility."
**China has approved two more genetically modified products for import, which should leave four products awaiting decisions from the Chinese Ministry of Agriculture.
The ministry has approved Syngenta's Agrisure Duracade corn, engineered to be resistant to corn rootworm, and Monsanto's Roundup Ready corn. Dow received import approval last month for Enlist corn, which China approved along with a Monsanto soybean variety, Vistive Gold.
At the time, Dow said it had received inquiries from China about Enlist soybeans and would address those questions quickly.
**The Department of Energy has selected three projects to receive $8 million for discovery of techniques to make algae-based fuel production cost effective. The research is aimed at delivering biology-focused breakthroughs while enabling accelerated future innovations through data sharing.
Seattle-based Lumen Bioscience will engineer algae strains that grow robustly in seawater, and resist contamination and predation.
Global Algae Innovations, of California, will explore tools, data and methods related to pond algae production.