A four-member team of mid-level flour milling managers from Japan are at NCI today to learn more about U.S. wheat breeding, production, handling and marketing systems and hear an overview of this year's hard red spring (HRS) wheat and durum crops. The team is escorted by USW Japan Country Director Wataru "Charlie" Utsunomiya, and Erica Olson, Marketing Specialist for North Dakota Wheat Commission. NCI Director Mark Weber and NCI Food Technologist Natsuki Fugiwara hosted the team. Japan imports nearly 120 million bushels of U.S. wheat on an annual basis, with nearly 50 million bushels of that being HRS. While Japan imports primarily HRS, white and hard red winter wheat classes, they also import small amounts of durum and there is potential for increased demand in coming years.