With the implementation of the free trade agreement (FTA) between Colombia and Canada on Aug. 15, U.S. corn exports will be facing a new competitor — Canadian feed wheat.

U.S. Grains Council trade sources indicate that Colombian buyers have placed orders for 125,000 metric tons of Canadian feed wheat in the 10 days since the agreement went into effect.

These imports will further erode U.S. corn sales opportunities in this vital corn market.

According to Kurt Shultz, USGC regional director in Latin America, because the United States has not ratified the pending U.S./Colombian FTA, U.S. corn, which is taxed at 15 percent duty, faces stiff competition from Brazilian and Argentine corn with a duty of 6.7 percent and from duty-free Canadian feed wheat.

In 2007, Colombia imported 3 million tons (118.1 million bushel) of corn with the United States enjoying a 93 percent market share.

In 2010, however, U.S. market share has shrunk to only 20 percent.