A trade team from Taiwan is scheduled to tour the Pacific Northwest's wheat industry in September, making a stop at the Wheat Marketing Center in Portland, Ore., to take a course in blending flour varieties for favorable end-use qualities at a low cost.
The Idaho Wheat Commission approved $4,000 for the training, the Washington Wheat Commission allocated $5,000 and the Oregon Wheat Commission allocated $3,000.
Last season Taiwan purchased 1 million tons of U.S. wheat of all classes, making it the No. 7 buyer of U.S. wheat, according to U.S. Wheat Associates. Taiwan purchased 130,000 metric tons of soft white, 588,000 metric tons of hard red spring and 320,000 metric tons of hard red winter from the Pacific Northwest.
Idaho Wheat Commission officials said Taiwan is interested in also buying as much hard white wheat as possible, but it's unlikely that they'll find a source, said the commission's executive director Blaine Jacobson.
"That's a class they don't buy but would like to buy," Jacobson said. "Our domestic mills are taking all of the production we have in the U.S."