Tereza Cristina (in the middle), the Brazilian Minister of Agriculture, Livestock and Food Supply attended SIAL China 2019 in Shanghai.
Last week, AgroPages attended SIAL China 2019 in Shanghai, where AgroPages was honored to have an interview with Tereza Cristina, the Brazilian Minister of Agriculture, Livestock and Food Supply, Congressman Luiz Hiloshi Nishimori, who is also the new pesticide law rapporteur, and Jones Yasuda, the CEO of prime Brazilian cooperatives agrochemical company CCAB Agro.
Before the arrival of the Minister, AgroPages learned that one of the main purposes of Tereza Cristina’s visit would be to promote Brazil as an important food supplier. The SIAL trade show attracted many Brazilian farm product and foodstuff vendors. The minister made her first stop of her China tour in SIAL, and was present to cut the ribbon at the Brazilian pavilion, having also visited all Brazilian exhibitors. The activities of the minister are a reflection of her full attentions to the trade development in Brazilian farm products.
Out of her tight schedule, AgroPages had the chance for a brief interview with the minister. Cristina says she has been expecting to visit China to strengthen agricultural cooperation between two countries. This visit is only the beginning of more exchanges for the future. The minister said there might be some specific cooperative programs happening this time, such as a long-term cooperation agreement in agricultural research, to be executed between universities (China Agricultural University and University of Sao Paulo).
At the exhibition, AgroPages conducted a discussion with Luiz Hiloshi Nishimori, a congressman from Brazil. Mr. Nishimori is a Brazilian politician, the federal delegate of Paraná, being one of the main rapporteurs of Brazil’s Bill PL 6299 for pesticide industry. The new law, Bill PL 6299, when approved, will provide fast introduction of new techniques necessary for Brazilian Agriculture, both new molecules and generic crop protection products.
Mr. Nishimori told AgroPages that the current pesticide law of Brazil was enacted 30 years ago, appears to be rather outdated and needs to be updated to adapt to the current development of the pesticide industry in Brazil. On the other hand, Brazil is a large farm product exporting country where farmers need more novel products and new solutions to safeguard the quality of food. Therefore, the Brazilian government released a new pesticide law, which was approved by a special committee headed by Tereza Cristina. Based on the effective communication between the congressmen and Brazilian President, the new pesticide law has been now submitted to Brazil’s congress. After approval of congress, it will be forwarded to the senate, which will then finally become effective after being duly signed by the President.
Nishimori is confident in obtaining the approval of the new pesticide law within this year. After the new pesticide law comes into force, the time-consuming registration process in Brazil is anticipated to be much improved.
He also says that the new Brazilian President, Jair Bolsonaro, is a pro-farming and environment-friendly person. He says that with the joint effort between the minister and the President, coming up next, some new policies would be released in Brazil, which will be of great benefit to Brazil’s future agricultural development.
Furthermore, AgroPages exchanged views with Mr. Nishimori regarding Brazil’s approval of more biological products. Information shows that a total of 450 pesticide products were approved in Brazil in 2018, which is a historic high record. Among the approved products, over 50 biological products were included. Nishimori told AgroPages that biological products were approved in Brazil for use in organic farming, which is very helpful to framers and also for a traditional production is welcome for MIPC (Management Integrated Pest Control). There are many minor crops in Brazil, for which there are not too many pesticide choices as for row crops like soybean, these are already well regulated and governed by explicit laws and regulations. Minor crops are also an integral part of Brazilian farming, which need more biological products to protect the interest of growers of minor crops.
Nishimori also said that China is a most important farm product customer of Brazil, whilst Brazil is a customer of Chinese crop protection products. The governments of the two countries ought to strengthen exchanges and cooperation in agriculture and the pesticide industry to jointly promote development on a long-term basis.
Journalist of AgroPages talked with Jones Yasuda (in the middile), the CEO of CCAB Agro and Brazilian Congressman Luiz Hiloshi Nishimori (right).
During the interview, AgroPages also had a conversation with Jones Yasuda, CEO of CCAB Agro, a leading agrochemical company in Brazil, who accompanied the visit of the minister to China. After its cooperation with the French enterprise Invivo Group since 2017, CCAB has experienced a rapid growth over the last 2 years. The company is prepared to expand its business to all regions of Brazil and to extend business coverage to major crops such as cotton, soybean and corn. However when asked about the constraints encountered by the company in its rapid development, Mr. Yasuda did not hesitate to address the issue of China’s stringent environmental compliance regulations which causes shutdowns of factories and insufficient supply of products, he emphasis that agreed on the China government decision, but saying that this is the main problem for all companies in Brazil. Additionally, the companies that have been awarded registration in Brazil may be affected either by environmental compliance requirements or the explosion accident in chemical parks not long ago, as factories are closed down or requested to relocate, their registration in Brazil becomes invalid, which will cause losses to the factories. In view of the situation, CCAB Agro is currently trying to approach government bodies to receive their understanding and release certain supportive policies, to give a 1 - 2 year grace period to the registration, such that affected companies can have more time to fix their problems.
Yasuda told AgroPages that the Chinese market changes very fast and he, himself, would visit China 3 or 4 times every year. The purpose of frequent visits is to learn of changes in the Chinese market, which are important to ensure a timely adjustment to the business strategy of the company. Yasuda has planned the next visit to China for this July, to participate in the 2019 China Pesticide Exporting Workshop (2019 CPEW) hosted by AgroPages, where he is going to deliver a keynote speech regarding to market demand from Brazil, as well as the business operation experience of agricultural cooperatives in Brazil.
Reporting by Christina Xie, Journalist of AgroPages