SENASICA reported that after three years of negotiations, Mexico will begin importing barley from Argentina. The commercial deal was achieved through the joint efforts of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, SADER and the Argentine National Service of Quality and Agri-Food Health (SENASA).
According to SENASA, barley production has quadrupled over the past 20 years. Furthermore, it was the fastest-growing commodity in terms of exports in 2022. “Barley exports represent 1.8% of domestic exports with US$1.6 billion and a percentage variation of 70.5% between 2021 and 2022. Last year, it was only surpassed by lithium exports, which recorded 236.2% growth, and oil complex products that reached 78.5%,” stated SENASA.
Last year the main destinations for Argentine barley were China, with purchases of over US$654 million, and member countries of the Common Market of the South (Mercosur), mainly Brazil, which accounted for 94.4% of exports in the region with US$576 million.
In Mexico, barley is mainly destined to the beer industry. In 2022, the country was the world leader in beer exports, with gains of over US$6.03 billion. Moreover, beer surpassed berry exports with US$1.3 billion in 1Q23 and consolidated itself as the leading agri-food trade product, as reported by MBN. In 2022, Mexico spent US$145 million in barley imports.
Mexico ranks 33rd in barley production, with an average of 34,531 producers that depend on this activity. Production is mainly distributed in the Bajio region, comprising the states of Guanajuato, Queretaro and Michoacan; the Altiplano, in Hidalgo, Puebla, Tlaxcala and State of Mexico, and the northern region in Durango and Zacatecas. Hidalgo is the most important domestic producer, with an average production area of 6.2ha.