October 2, 2019

Portland, OR

The U.S. dry bean industry looks forward to new opportunities to grow market share in Japan with the announcement of an initial trade agreement that eliminatesimportdutieson most classes of U.S. dry beansas of January 1, 2020. The U.S. has maintained a steady and consistent market share in Japan but the lack of a level playing field has limited export growth. Japan is a critical export destination for U.S. dry beans and has always held tremendous potential for market share growth “This could be the catalyst we need to solidify our partnerships with Japanese buyers, diversify end uses for dry beans, and grow our market share in Japan,” noted Rebecca Bratter, Executive Director.

Japan is the U.S.’ 8thlargest dry bean export market, with total exports just under 8,000 MT/annually with a value of $US 7.7 million(in 2018). While this market has been growing slowly, the U.S. does not have a dominant sharein this 60,000 MT dry bean import market. While the total amount of dry bean imports remains limited byaquota system, there is plenty of room for theU.S. to grow market share within the quota once we gain preferential market access in 2020. This is very welcome news during what continues to be a tough few years for U.S. agriculture. Accordingto USDBC President Deon Maasjo, of Kelley Bean Company in Oakes, North Dakota, “U.S. dry bean growers and dealers have felt the impact of this challenging trade environment and are excited to celebrate the signing of a long desired trade agreement with Japan that opens the door to increased exports in the long term.”

USDBC has already added a new program element in 2019 to diversify dry bean use in Japan, with the support of USDA’s Agricultural Trade Program (ATP). This is proving very timely and will serve as the basis for expanded operations in 2020. We are looking forward to the future of dry bean trade with Japan.

For more information please contact the US Dry Bean Council at

The U.S. Dry Beans Council (USDBC) was formed over forty years agoto represent farmers, dealers and corporate members who grow, handle, export and process dry beans grown in the United States.The purpose and mission of the USDBC is to provide a unified voice for the dry bean industry, and to promote the healthy attributes of our food to increase the consumption of beans grown in the United States.The USDBC strives to be successful in representing the diverse interests of the U.S. dry bean producers, handlers and processors, affecting the U.S. industry’s ability to compete both domestically and globally.
Posted in: Bean Bulletin