State, Nation’s Ag Exports Booming, UT Prof Says

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Tennessee’s agricultural exports are growing rapidly and playing an important role in the nation’s surging agricultural trade market, an international trade specialist at the University of Tennessee said Friday.

Dr. Greg Pompelli said Tennessee — like the nation — is experiencing rapid growth in international export of agricultural products.

The Agriculture Department recently announced the U.S. agricultural trade surplus reached a record $25.8 billion last year, up 37 percent from 1994. Nationally, agricultural exports totaled $55.8 billion, also a record.

Tennessee was the nation’s leading exporter of hardwood products, exporting $83 million in 1994, Pompelli said.

The state’s total agricultural exports have jumped drastically, from $269 million in 1993 to $385 million in 1994, he said.

“We’re following right along with the nation’s export markets and doing great business,” Pompelli said. “I would expect that along with all the gains the U.S. made in 1995, we should see some of that growth here.

“Exports — both food products and hardwood lumber — are an important part of the ag market in Tennessee, and we can expect to see continued growth.”

The Agricultural Department report says sales to China and the Pacific Rim accounted for a large part of the growth.

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Contact: Dr. Greg Pompelli (423-974-7231)

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