Texas Department of Agriculture has launched a global initiative to bring more Texas products to international markets and secure international trade opportunities for Texas farmers and ranchers. Last month, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) declared an agreement with Brazil's Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Food Supply to allow US beef and beef products into the Brazilian market. This agreement will allow both countries to resume trade in this industry for the first time since 2003. The Agriculture Commission believes this arrangement will benefit our state economy as a whole, and especially areas like South Texas.

A state agency, Texas Legislative Council, ranks the Lone Star State as one of the top agriculture producers in the country. Texas currently ranks #2 in the cattle industry and #1 in the cotton industry in the United States. The state of Texas ranks in the top five states in the production of the following: hay, peanuts, sorghum, pecans, mohair, rice, onions, watermelon and grapefruit. 86% of the land in Texas is used for some form of agricultural production and is the 4th largest food producer in the United States.

The global initiative to bring more Texas products to international markets will benefit our agriculture industry and our state economy. It comes with great pride to know that many constituents in our district are the ranchers and farmers that feed Texas, our country and the world.