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USMEF program boosts pork markets

US red meat companies taking advantage of the USDA's Branded Products Promotion Program – administered through USMEF – rang up $6,920,063 in sales of US beef and pork to international buyers in fiscal year 2008, an increase of nearly 27% over the previous year.

The Branded Products Promotion Program has had noteworthy success in helping smaller companies gain entry to targeted export markets and establish their branded products. These companies use their own money, leveraged with matching funds from the program, to develop export markets for US beef, pork or lamb exports. The companies involved in this year's program are exporting pork and beef to markets that include Mexico, Japan and Europe.

There are still funds available in the program for the current year to can help small US companies attend international and approved domestic shows with large international attendance and assist with international travel costs. Two of the companies participating in the program in 2008 were new to exporting. One company's activities included product demonstrations in Mexico while another company's activities involved a chef seminar in Germany.

The branded program is a small part of the larger coordinated USMEF effort that includes generic funding from USDA's Market Access and Foreign Market Development programs, private industry funds and funding from the beef, pork, corn and soybean checkoffs to promote foreign sales of US red meats.

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• USMEF

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