onal Marketing

Home to the most farms and ranches in the United States of America, Texas plays a large – you might even say “Texas-Sized” – role in global agricultural exports. We are a top producer of more than 35 different agricultural commodities, and home to foods and flavors as big and bold as the state itself. The Texas Department of Agriculture promotes the state’s robust agriculture, food, and beverage sectors. The agency’s Trade and Business Development division works to connect consumers, retailers, processors, chefs, and agribusiness partners around the world with products that are Texas made, by Texas makers. 

Across the Lone Star State and around the world, Texas agriculture has something going - and growing - all year long. Check out this video to explore Texas agriculture and find out why we're the 4th largest agricultural exporter in the U.S. 

                                                                                                  Texas Agriculture Overview Video

Exporting TX Products

International Trade Leads

There is a valuable Trade Lead System on the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) website, which posts new and current trade leads with international buyers with specific needs and interests.

You'll need to become a registered user and then you can have another resource to check out these leads that might be relevant to your business. Click here for an overview and to register.

Is Your Company "Export Ready?"

Your company may be more "export ready" than you think. Take the Export Readiness Test and discover your company's potential to take your agri-business worldwide. Also, take a look at USDA’s quick guide to getting started.

Many small companies believe exporting is only for large, multinational companies, but the U.S. Department of Commerce reports that the majority of American businesses sending their goods and services overseas are companies of 20 employees or fewer. Small companies often find success in exporting due to the "niche" status of their product or through specialized services.

TDA partners with a number of organizations to help promote opportunities for Texas agriculture products, food, beverages, and livestock and genetics to go abroad. These partners include USDA Foreign Agricultural Service, the Southern United States Trade Association (SUSTA), and U.S. Livestock Genetics Export, Inc. (USLGE).

USDA Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS)

FAS links U.S. agriculture to the world to enhance export opportunities and global food security. In addition to its Washington, D.C. staff, FAS has a global network of 93 offices covering 105 countries. These offices are staffed by agricultural attachés and locally-hired agricultural experts who are the eyes, ears, and voice for U.S. agriculture around the world. FAS staff identify problems, provide practical solutions, and work to advance opportunities for U.S. agriculture and support U.S. foreign policy around the globe.

It is the primary source of funding for many programs that support small businesses in exporting globally, including SUSTA and USLGE. Texas companies should take advantage of FAS knowledge and programs to start promoting products worldwide.

Click HERE to see the latest Foreign Ag Attaché event.

The following programs are services of  FAS:

  • Trade Lead System (TLS): a tool to allow for real-time distribution of FAS approved trade leads from foreign buyers to potential US suppliers
  • CCC Export Credit Guarantee Programs (GSM) 102/103: encourages exporters to buy in countries where credit is necessary to maintain or increase U.S. sales but where financing may not be available without CCC guarantees
  • Facility Guarantee Program (FGP): provides payment guarantees to facilitate the financing of manufactured goods and services exported from the United States to improve or establish agriculture-related facilities in emerging markets
  • Data and Analysis: tools to assess export statistics, market trends, changes and forecasts

Market Access Programs (MAP)

Our partners offer various programs that make it easy and affordable to target international markets:

  • SUSTA 50% CostShare provides up to 50 percent reimbursement for eligible international marketing expenses to promote all kinds of U.S. agricultural products
  • SUSTA Global Events connects U.S. businesses with international buyers through trade shows, trade missions and one-on-one meetings
  • USLGE Branded Livestock provides up to 50 percent reimbursement for eligible expenses to promote U.S. dairy, beef, swine, horse and sheep internationally

The Southern United States Trade Association (SUSTA)

SUSTA is a non-profit association that supports small businesses to develop trade internationally and increase the export of southern U.S. food and agriculture products. Its members consist of the 15 Departments of Agriculture of the Southern States and Puerto Rico. 

SUSTA has two Market Access Programs: 50% CostShare and Global Events. Both programs help promote U.S. brands and companies worldwide in a variety of ways. For instance, they can reimburse up to 50% of certain international marketing expenses like advertising and shipping. 

SUSTA also organizes low-cost activities which focus on connecting U.S. companies with foreign buyers, including inbound and outbound trade missions, foreign market seminars and international trade shows. For example, in late June 2015, SUSTA brought in buyers from Japan, Canada, China and several European countries to meet one-on-one with U.S. companies at the NYC Fancy Food Show. The cost to participate in that trade mission was only $25. 

TDA partners closely with SUSTA to develop successful trade events for Texas and other Southern U.S. companies. Learn more about programs and events at

To see the latest TDA/SUSTA webinar, click HERE!

U.S. Livestock Genetic Export, Inc.

USLGE is a non-profit, nationwide trade association that brings together a broad base of U. S. livestock organizations. It represents the international marketing interests of the dairy, beef, sheep, swine and horse breeding industries. USLGE members also include the embryo and semen industry, livestock export sector, plus federal and state departments of agriculture (including TDA). It also provides technology, services and financial assistance programs to support your investment.

Click HERE for the latest USLGE Importer Resource Guide 

State Trade Expansion Program (STEP) Grant

The State Trade Expansion Program (STEP), implemented by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), provides financial awards to state governments to assist small businesses with export development. Through this award, TDA aims to increase the number of Texas small businesses exporting to foreign markets and to boost the value of exported goods and services. TDA has partnered with the Texas Governor’s Office of Economic Development and Tourism (OOG) and the U.S. Department of Commerce to develop and implement a program to offer Texas businesses export training, technical assistance, market expansion opportunities through the participation in the state-led trade shows and financial support to conduct individual export activities. To learn more, visit the STEP page on the TDA site.

Texas Livestock Goes Global

Only a livestock marketing program as big and bold as the Lone Star State it represents could possess the resources to bring buyers and sellers together to facilitate the export of livestock and premium livestock genetics to destinations around the world. 

No matter what type of Texas livestock you are selling or searching for, TDA's Marketing staff is available to help you find what you need. Providing exceptional personal assistance, TDA's bilingual livestock marketing specialists can do everything from arranging itineraries and meeting buyers at the airport to escorting them to Texas ranches, serving as guides and translators.

Exporting Livestock Internationally
Check here for information on the livestock export program including reservation procedures, rules and TDA’s Guide to Exporting Live Cattle to Mexico.

Certificates and Export Information 

Texas Department of State Health Services' (TDSHS) Food and Drug Licensing Group issues an official document called the Certificate of Free Sale and/or Certificate of Origin. The Texas Department of Agriculture is aware that considerable confusion exists surrounding this frequently requested document. For general information, visit the Texas Department of State Health Services website or call (512) 834-6626. 

For exportation information for meat, poultry and egg products, visit the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service website or call (888) 674-6854. 

If difficulties persist with an exporter, or if your company needs more information, e-mail us at

Additional Export Related Information

Federation of International Trade Associations
FITA offers a comprehensive searchable database of international trade Web resources. More than 8,000 links to international trade/import-export websites are annotated and indexed. 

Market Diversification Tool
The Market Diversification Tool can help identify potential new export markets using your current trade patterns. Based on the products you export and the markets you currently export to, the tool uses an algorithm to rank potential markets you may want to consider as future export markets. 

U.S. Census Bureau
The Census Bureau strives to be the pre-eminent collector and provider of timely, relevant and quality data about the people and economy of the United States. Exporters and importers will find the Schedule B Section of the website particularly useful to identify the 10-digit export code for any potential export product. 

U.S. Commercial Service
The U.S. Commercial Service offers valuable assistance to help your business export goods and services to markets worldwide. This site provides access a global listing of trade events, international market research and practical tools to help with every step of the export process. 

U.S. Customs
U.S. Customs regulates all U.S. borders and points of entry. Its website gives detailed information about trade issues, U.S. ports and points of entry, customs documentation and enforcement issues. 

U.S. Export Assistance Centers
The centers are located in major metropolitan areas throughout the nation and are staffed by professionals from the Small Business Association, the U.S. Department of Commerce, the U.S. Export-Import Bank, and other public and private organizations.

U.S. ITC 2000 Tariff Database
The Tariff Database includes planned staged tariff reductions (where applicable) and 3-year import data. 

World Trade Organization (WTO)
The WTO is a rules-based, member-driven organization that serves to help producers, exporters, and importers conduct business internationally. The WTO provides a forum for negotiation that ensures reduced obstacles to international trade, with the goal of economic growth and development worldwide.


Contact us for more information on upcoming training events, export trends and statistics. If you have questions about going global, we're here to help!

Dr. Jean Lonie
Coordinator for International Marketing 
(512) 463-6098

Kirby Bohls
Program Specialist 
(512) 475-0366