Leaders from across American agriculture, USDA Foreign Agricultural Service Administrator Ken Isley, Rep. Rick Crawford, R-Arkansas, and staff members from the offices of Sens. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, Mike Braun, R-Indiana, and John Boozman, R-Arkansas, participated in a roundtable discussion on U.S. agricultural trade, food security and national security with Director General Manuel Otero of the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture.
The IICA was founded in 1942. Its mission is to encourage, promote and support member states in their efforts to achieve agricultural development and rural well-being through international cooperation.
The U.S. Dairy Export Council values its collaboration with IICA, said Jaime Castañeda, senior vice president of policy strategy and trade and executive director of the U.S. Dairy Export Council.
"IICA plays a critical role in the dissemination of valuable and applicable information while promoting agriculture and rural development in the region," he said. "The world, but in particular the Americas, benefit greatly from IICA efforts to promote these values in international organizations."
Director General Otero said he is committed to working with the agricultural private sector.
"In agriculture, and in the economy in general, the private sector is an engine for growth," Otero said. "I believe it is essential to build strong alliances with both, the public and private sectors, to ensure a strong trading block and promote innovation and digital transformation in the region."
Otero became director of the IICA in 2018. He is from Argentina.