The USA Rice Federation reports that Iraq recently purchased 100,000 metric tons of U.S. long-grain rice in its latest tender.

Historically, Iraq has been a sporadic but rather large market for U.S. rice. From a high of 385,000 metric tons in 2005-06 to 121,000 metric tons last marketing year, this 100,000 metric tons sale, said USA Rice, “demonstrates that this is a market that must be taken seriously.”

USA Rice is building relationships with the Iraqi Grain Board and the Ministry of Trade.

Almost all the imported rice is distributed through a ration system administered by the Iraqi government and all purchase decisions are made by the government.

Due to the security situation, USA Rice does not have an active promotions program in Iraq.

The U.S. Embassy in Baghdad plans to take a contingent of Iraqis to the Gulfood Show in Dubai, United Arab Emirates on Feb. 21-24. USA Rice is exhibiting at the event and “will interact with the members of the U.S. Embassy-sponsored team to promote more purchases of U.S.-grown rice.”