Morocco is the United States’ first and only free trade agreement (FTA) partner on the African
continent and an example of the growth potential possible with a combination of strong trade
policy and long-term market development. The U.S. Grains Council and its partners in Morocco
celebrated the 15th anniversary of the U.S.-Morocco FTA in 2021.
The FTA has created tremendous opportunities for U.S. agriculture by reducing market barriers and stimulating
growth in Moroccan industries that import agricultural products from the United States. Total
U.S. exports to Morocco reached $1.2 billion in 2020, compared to $35 million in 2005 before FTA
implementation. Before 2005, corn imports by Morocco were small, hindered by an import duty on corn reaching as high as
85 percent. As a result, the poultry industry was highly fragmented, poultry consumption was low, and the dairy and beef
sectors struggled to keep up with the demand for milk and beef products.
The Council initially entered Morocco in 1995 when it began working on expanding the poultry
industry through the formation of a producer association, FISA, on representing the poultry and
feed value chain. In the intervening years, the Council has partnered with FISA to advocate to
the Moroccan government on issues that would allow the industry to grow and develop in a
stable and transparent environment. The Council also partnered with FISA to provide technical
support to industry members to promote poultry industry development.
Since FISA’s formation and later through the FTA implementation, corn imports to Morocco have grown from 450 thousand
metric tons (TMT) per year (17.7 million bushels) to 3 million metric tons (MMT) (118.1 million bushels) per year.
Additionally, per capita consumption levels of poultry meat have grown more
than three-fold from three kilograms (kg) (6.61 pounds) per capita in 1995 to 22 kg
(48.49 pounds) per capita in 2020.
The FTA and the evolution of the poultry and feed industries also allowed the Council to
introduce new feed grains to the market beyond corn. These include U.S. distillers dried grains
with solubles (DDGS), corn gluten feed (CGF), corn gluten meal (CGM), barley, and sorghum.
The introduction of a variety of feed grains to the Moroccan feed industry has created more
depth and flexibility and has benefitted a wider range of U.S. producers.