"Today's report that Iraq purchased 60,000 metric tons of U.S. rice is welcome news for American producers. Not only is the size of the sale significant but it also marks the return of American rice to the Iraqi market.
"Iraq was once the top export market for U.S. rice and this is the first Iraq rice sale reported to USDA since the 2000/01 marketing year. Our rice industry is to be commended for its successful efforts to regain access to this important market.
"Iraq previously was an important market for a wide variety of commodities, including rice, corn, wheat, feed ingredients and wood products. USDA staff in Iraq and here at home have been working diligently on behalf of U.S. agriculture to develop that market again."
FAS PR 0055-05