If the U-S re-establishes trade relations with Cuba, a commodities expertsays Iowa corn and pork producers could see a much-needed boost in demandfor their products. Cuba could be buying a half-million tons of corn eachyear for feeding livestock, but has no access to the U-S market.Keith Heffernan is assistant director of the Center for Agricultural andRural Development at Iowa State University. The Center hosted two Cubantrade officials last week in Ames, where a seminar was held on the potentialbenefits of our nations rekindling relations.Heffernan says Cuba also imports a tremendous amount of pork from Canada andEurope as well as 200-thousand tons of soybean meal from South America eachyear. As for the possible re-establishment of trade relations between the U-Sand Cuba, Heffernan says there are a few potential negatives.The U-S ended trade with Cuba more than 40 years ago because of its tieswith the Soviet Union. It’s estimated nearly 70 percent of Cuba’s trade waswith the U-S before the embargo.
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