U.S. soy exports have set a record for the fourth year in a row with nearly 1.9 billion bushels sold to international markets in the last marketing year. Whole soybean exports totaled 1.45 billion bushels, up from the 1.24 billion bushels exported last year. Soybean meal exports equaled the equivalent of about 415 million bushels and soy oil exports topped 1.35 million metric tons. The USDA credited strong early season sales and a projected increase in global import demand – especially for China, which imported more than 800 million bushels – for the continued success of soy exports.

Meanwhile, U.S. soybean farmers started the new export marketing year on Sept. 1, with a considerable amount of soybean export commitments on the books. USDA reports that international customers have committed to over 540 million bushels for the upcoming marketing year. In addition, there are over 82 million bushels of soybeans sold in the 2009-2010 marketing year that will likely be carried over to 2010-2011. China remains the leading buyer of U.S. soybeans with known commitments of over 330 million bushels.

These record exports are made possible through the American Soybean Association’s (ASA) investment of cost-share funding provided by the USDA Foreign Agricultural Service and the soybean checkoff, which support the activities of ASA international marketing to promote U.S. soy through international marketing efforts and work with overseas buyers to increase exports and U.S. farmer profitability.