Along with our team at the Kentucky Department of Agriculture, there are many agencies and service providers available to assist both novice and experienced exporters seek technical, financial, and other trade related resources. Below are a few of these organizations’ web sites listed alphabetically, but you can browse with a focus on commodity interest or other attributes to find additional expertise or funding.
Advantage Kentucky Alliance
Advantage Kentucky Alliance (AKA) gives businesses access to the necessary international business knowledge to succeed through their ExporTech™ program. Engaging with customers overseas spurs innovation that can lead to the development of new processes, technologies, skills, and product applications. Through AKA’s partnerships, ExporTech™ participants build connections with global trade professionals.
American Farm Bureau Federation
The American Farm Bureau Federation, and its affiliate, the Kentucky Farm Bureau Federation represent their members within American agriculture, from small family farms to large agricultural corporations. Farm Bureau is local, county, state, national and international in its scope and influence. Their services include educational programing, issue advocacy, networking, and leadership development.
American Hardwood Export Council
The American Hardwood Export Council (AHEC) is an international trade association for the U.S. hardwood industry, representing U.S. hardwood exporters and several U.S. hardwood product trade associations. AHEC conducts promotion programs and activities for American hardwoods in over 35 countries and 50 export markets. It conducts its programs and activities in joint efforts with the Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) in the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).
Distilled Spirits Council of the United States
The Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS) is a national trade association representing producers and marketers of distilled spirits sold in the United States. DISCUS serves as a distillers’ advocate on legislative, regulatory and public affairs issues impacting the spirits industry at the local, state, federal and international levels.
Foreign Agricultural Service
The Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) is the foreign affairs agency with primary responsibility for the United States Department of Agriculture's (USDA) overseas programs — market development, international trade agreements and negotiations, and the collection of statistics and market information. It also administers the USDA's export credit guarantee and food aid programs and helps increase income and food availability in developing nations by mobilizing expertise for agriculturally led economic growth.
Kentucky Agricultural Development Fund
The Kentucky Agricultural Development Fund, in statute, is administered by the Kentucky Agricultural Development Board. The mission of the board is to invest these funds in innovative proposals that increase net farm income and affect tobacco farmers, tobacco-impacted communities and agriculture across the state by stimulating markets for Kentucky agricultural products. This includes finding new ways to add value to Kentucky agricultural products and exploring new opportunities that will benefit Kentucky farms now and in the future.
Kentucky and Southern Indiana District Export Council
The Kentucky and Southern Indiana District Export Council (KDEC) is an organization of business leaders, who provide a source of professional advice for Kentucky businesses in international trade. It is part of the National Association of District Export Councils (NADEC), a non-profit organization which increases awareness and understanding of the importance of exports through education, legislative outreach, and engagement.
Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development
The Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development (KCED) is a state agency that promotes job creation, retention, and business investment in Kentucky. KCED works to attract new industries and prepare communities for economic development opportunities. KCED provides support and resources for entrepreneurs, startups, and small business owners, as well as helping Kentucky businesses to grow and expand domestically and abroad.
Kentucky Distillers’ Association
The Kentucky Distillers’ Association (KDA) is a non-profit organization which promotes and advocates for the bourbon and distilled spirits industry. Its mission is to protect the trade interests of the industry, and to handle common problems in a concerted action. KDA founded the Kentucky Bourbon Trail in 1999, and continues to promote Kentucky bourbon and distilled spirits in all of its activities.
Kentucky Export Initiative
The Kentucky Export Initiative (KEI) is a partnership of government entities, business organizations and trade experts that helps Kentucky businesses find opportunities to sell their products abroad. Their goal is to increase Kentucky exports, which will lead to new Kentucky jobs, and create diversified markets for Kentucky products. The Cabinet for Economic Development provides staffing and resources to assist the KEI partners in helping businesses recognize opportunities associated with exporting.
National Association of State Departments of Agriculture
The National Association of State Departments of Agriculture (NASDA) is a nonpartisan, nonprofit association representing the elected and appointed commissioners, secretaries, and directors of the departments of agriculture in all fifty states and four U.S. territories. NASDA forges policy between state departments of agriculture, the federal government, and stakeholders.
Northern Kentucky International Trade Association
The Northern Kentucky International Trade Association (NKITA) is the international trade branch of the Northern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce. It provides advocacy, mentorship, and educational resources for Northern Kentucky businesses interested in importing and exporting.
Southern United States Trade Association
The Southern United States Trade Association (SUSTA) is a regional trade group which facilitates USDA program funding for eligible exporters within its 15 member-states. The financial and technical support assists small businesses with promoting value-added U.S. food and agricultural products to foreign markets. These funds are largely provided through a 50% CostShare program, and a Global Events program, which are designed to work independently or in conjunction with one another.
US Commercial Service
The US Commercial Service (USCS) is the trade promotion arm of the International Trade Administration within the United States Department of Commerce. The mission of the USCS is to promote the export of goods and services from the United States. By focussing on small- and medium-sized businesses, USCS works to represent U.S. business interests internationally and to help U.S. businesses find qualified international partners.
U.S. Grains Council
The U.S. Grains Council develops export markets for U.S. barley, corn, sorghum and related products including distiller’s dried grains with solubles, and ethanol. It administers FAS funds through market development programs to promote international trade in grain markets in more than 50 countries and the European Union.
U.S. Livestock Genetics Export, Inc.
U.S. Livestock Genetics Export, Inc. (USLGE) is a nonprofit, nationwide trade association that brings together a broad base of U.S. livestock organizations. The USLGE’s main purpose is to export U.S. livestock genetics. They represent the international marketing interests of the dairy, beef, sheep, swine, horse, and small ruminant (sheep and goats) breeding industries. Their members also include the embryo and semen industries, livestock export sector, and State Departments of Agriculture.
U.S. Meat Export Federation
The U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF) is a nonprofit trade association working to create new opportunities and develop existing international markets for the U.S. red meat industry, including beef, pork, lamb and veal. USMEF has nine distinct sectors representing the entire U.S. production, processing and distribution system. Through its worldwide network of offices, USMEF has forged a series of partnerships which have enabled U.S. companies and U.S. products to become integral parts of international red meat markets.
U.S. Soybean Export Council
The U.S. Soybean Export Council is a non-profit export market development organization for the U.S. soybean industry. It promotes U.S. soybeans through Market Access Programs, and provides technical assistance to U.S. producers and foreign customers interested in U.S. soybeans.
U.S. Wheat Associates
U.S. Wheat Associates (USW) is the export market development organization for the U.S. wheat industry in all six U.S. wheat classes. It promotes U.S. wheat to wheat buyers, millers, bakers, food processors and government officials in more than 100 countries around the world.
USA Poultry and Egg Export Council
The USA Poultry and Egg Export Council (USAPEEC) is a nonprofit organization that primarily promotes exports of U.S. poultry and eggs around the world. It also advocates for the industry on trade policy issues that impact U.S. poultry and egg exports. It serves as an intermediary with the USDA in Washington, embassies, and Agricultural Trade Offices around the world.