Trade Service Through MAP Keeps Wheat Flowing to Panama

In a rising price environment, U.S. Wheat Associates (USW) used Market Access Program (MAP) funding to help Panamanian flour millers change purchase specifications and maintain U.S. wheat import volumes in 2021/22.

With global shortages in exportable wheat supplies, U.S. wheat prices started rising in early 2021. A trade service advantage for U.S. wheat exports is the inspection data generated by the USDA’s Federal Grain Inspection Service (see photo below). In August and September 2021, USW conducted virtual wheat procurement seminars for three Panamanian flour mills with Spanish-speaking FGIS officials Ramon Luevano and Jesús Montero-Arce, North Dakota State University agricultural economist Dr. Frayne Olson, and marketing specialist Guy Allen with IGP Institute.

With recommendations from the virtual seminar, the mills adjusted their hard red winter (HRW) wheat protein requirements from minimum 11.5% to minimum 11%. Together with other contract adjustments, these changes helped the millers secure adequate supplies of U.S. HRW and hard red spring (HRS) wheat at lower prices than their typical specifications would allow. Rather than turning to competing, lower cost suppliers, the trade service made possible by the MAP program encouraged the millers to stay with U.S. wheat.

Even with prices doubled from 2020/21, the Panamanian mills made significant purchases in April 2022. This moved Panama’s 2021/22 HRS imports to 62,000 metric tons (MT) with a value of $25.1 million, and HRW volume to about 29,500 MT valued at $10.9 million.





Central America


U.S. Wheat Associates


Market Access Program - MAP


Colorado, Kansas, North Dakota, Oklahoma