U.S. agricultural trade relations with China are tense as the United States continues to insist that China agree to speedier acceptance of new genetically modified crops and China continues to lean on the United States to allow imports of Chinese chicken. But USDA Deputy Secretary Krysta Harden, who visited China from July 7- 12 for the U.S.-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue, told Politico she had “several productive meetings with Chinese officials.”

Harden said she “had the chance to meet with Chinese importers of American agricultural products and USDA staff working to get U.S. products into the Chinese market.” Vice Premier Wang Yang, who oversees agriculture, was among the officials she met.

“China is the largest market for American agricultural products, and many opportunities still exist to increase U.S. exports,” Harden said. “I experienced firsthand the work USDA staff is doing to create new opportunities and I saw how much potential exists for American products in China. I can say with certainty that we are working hard to achieve that potential for the benefit of American farmers and ranchers.”

“My visit builds on the recent trade mission to China led by Under Secretary for Farm and Foreign Agricultural Services Michael Scuse and helps lay the foundation for the upcoming U.S.-China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade and the second Agricultural Symposium in China, both to be held this fall,” Harden said.