We had an early start today but were excited to be visiting a large grain terminal in Rosario, the third largest city in Argentina with a population of about 1.2 million. When we arrived at the terminal it was raining outside so we rushed to the control room and the laboratory. We were shocked by the size of the terminal and some of the stats we learned!
This facility crushes 20,000 tonnes of soybean grain per day. We found it interesting to learn about the biodiesel production process. We also learned that soybean production is the number one crop in Argentina - there are 57 million tonnes produced annually. The rain allowed us the opportunity to check out the ships used to ship grain. We couldn't believe the size of the ships!
We stopped for lunch at a local restaurant which had a great ambiance. We enjoyed excellent company and a delicious meal consisting of salad, chicken, fried vegetables and potato-chip style fries. The meal was a hit with the entire class.
After lunch, we headed to the headquarters of Federacion Agraria Argentina where we learned about a farmers union that lobbies for the ag sector. We had an engaging discussion about some of the difficulties that small and medium sized producers face. High taxation and a politically unstable environment gave our class a lot of insight into the Argentinian agricultural sector.