Corn Commentary

A Future Look at International Trade

The U.S. Grains Council just held it’s International Marketing Conference and the keynote speaker was the Hon. Carole L. Brookins, Managing Director of Public Capital Advisors, LLC.

Her topic was “Growing Grain Markets in a (Sustainable) Brave New World.”

“We are moving into a new era of focus on global public goods, including money, trade, climate and environment. With that come global threats: cyber terrorism, fragmented political and economic power, radical groups seeking to control weapons of mass destruction and piracy on the high seas,” she said.

Brookins identified four trends shaping our world today. First – a re-balancing of global wealth and power. “There are shifts in global economic leadership, which creates a wider competition to maintain and grow market share,” said Brookins. Second – a revolution in energy supply and markets. According to Brookins, this is fueled by climate change, resource depletion, energy security and technological innovation. Third – a rebellion against the modern food system. “Activist groups attack the safety and value of the modern food production system,” she said. Fourth – a resurgence of investment in commodities and agriculture. According to Brookins, this will be stimulated through investments, control of the supply chain and economic power.

“Experience shows that sustainable global food security will depend on intensive, large scale agriculture and expanding global trade,” Brookins said. “Both your risks and reward will be multiplied. Your complexity of choices and competition will be magnified. The brand of the Council is highly respected around the world. Renew your mission in 2010 and lead out in a growing, dynamic world of 9 billion lives over the next 50 years. I look forward to watching.”

You can listen to Carole’s remarks here: