Droughts, Trade, Milk in the Spotlight: The Week in AgribusinessBy Sofía Hanna | Thu, 08/19/2021 - 15:55
This week, the Pacific Alliance held its IX Business Macro Round to promote free trade and business development. Mexico continues to face an increasing amount of issues with widespread droughts, especially in Guanajuato. Mexico’s agricultural trade balance reached its highest level in 29 years. Finally, SADER and the US government implemented a milk consumption campaign to promote its high nutritional value.
Interested in more? Here are the week’s major headlines in Agribusiness!
- The Pacific Alliance held the first part of its IX Business Macro Round along with exporters from Chile, Colombia, Mexico and Peru to promote free trade and business development across the continent. The main focus was given to Canada, the EU, Asia and Oceania. The event was divided into three phases: The first phase focused on business development with Asia and Oceania; the second phase focused on the EU; and the third phase addressed the markets of the Pacific Alliance and Canada, a country that could become an Associate State of the bloc. The segmentation of the Business Macro Round would allow their companies to know what products were in higher demand by its main allies and allow businesses to capitalize on the advantages provided through lower tariffs, improvements in delivery times and facilitation of commerce.
- Mexico’s northern states are grappling through one of the most intense and widespread droughts of the last three decades, which has come to devastate water-intensive industries like agriculture and livestock. The UN’s IPCC report warns straightforwardly that it is code red for humanity. However, the ingenuity of three brothers in Luis de la Paz, Guanajuato, is offering the world some hope. These brothers developed a way to combat land degradation and increase soil carbon storage. In Mexico, more than 60 percent of farmland has been severely degraded, while an additional 30 percent is in varying stages of ecological decay due to unsustainable agricultural practices coupled with exacerbated drought conditions, says the National Institute of Statistics and Geography (INEGI).
- Mexico reached its highest positive trade balance of agri-food products in 29 years during January-June 2021. During the period, agricultural and agro-industrial exports amounted to US$22.6 billion, while imports reached US$17.7 billion. One of the export success cases was Mexican raspberries, which reached US$713 million, a 13.6 percent increase compared to last year. Imports also grew within the period by over 56 percent, with four groups showing the highest increases: cereals, with 21 percent; oil seeds and oleaginous fruits, with 15 percent; meat, with 14 percent; and dairy and other products of animal origin, with 6 percent.
- Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Víctor Villalobos Arámbula, and his counterpart from the US, Tom Vilsack, implemented a milk consumption campaign to increase awareness of the nutritional properties of this product. Villalobos Arámbula explained that the Government of Mexico recognizes the importance of milk both because of its role in nutrition and because it has given rise to a true engine of livestock activity in Mexican fields. He also mentioned that climatic factors could not be ignored, which is why a joint effort is necessary to adapt milk production systems in the face of the imponderable weather conditions that generate uncertainty in the sector.