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News Article

Protected Agriculture in Mexico is Going Strong

By Eliza Galeana | Tue, 09/06/2022 - 16:58

During the 14th edition of the Annual Congress of the Mexican Association of Protected Horticulture (AMHPAC), Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Victor Villalobos stressed that protected agriculture drives Mexico to be an exporting power of fruits and vegetables, with sales of 5.8 million tons and value of US$7.84 billion. 

“The growth of protected agriculture in the national territory has allowed Mexico to position itself as one of the world’s leading producers of fruit and vegetables, producing around 39 million tons per year and representing a value of MX$39 billion (US1.93 billion),” highlighted Villalobos. The most-used technology in this kind of agriculture is shade netting, with more than 20,000ha, or 44 percent of the country’s protected agricultural surface, followed by greenhouses with more than 14,000ha, or 31 percent and finally the macro tunnel, with coverage exceeding 12,000ha, or 25 percent.

Vegetables use most of the space intended for protected agriculture in Mexico, with 59 percent of the surface, which represents about 28,000ha. This is followed by fruit trees, with 35 percent and a coverage of 16,000ha. Crops that stand out for their surface under cover are tomatoes and apples, with more than 12,000ha of shade netting, tomatoes and chilis with more than 10,000ha in greenhouse production, as well as raspberries and strawberries with more than 10,000ha placed in macro tunnel structures.  

The main states that practice undercover agriculture are Sinaloa, Jalisco, Coahuila, Michoacan and Sonora, which represent 66 percent of the total surface area at a national level via 31,276ha.

Guillermo Jiménez, President, the Mexican Association of Protected Horticulture (AMHPAC) said that despite the adversities the sector must confront such as the rise in the price of inputs and the pandemic, the agency contributes to Mexico’s economy by exporting more than one million 300,000 tons of vegetables in 2021, with a value of about US$1.4 billion and a surplus balance. “These numbers are the result of the more than 10,000ha of protected area distributed across 24 states of the country, which generate more than 100,000 direct jobs,” he added. 

The agricultural sector must sustainably reinvent food systems and provide healthy, safe, nutritious and above all affordable food to the entire population. Villalobos stated that public and private sectors work together to maintain the agreement that avoids US-based tomato anti-dumping measures, eradicate forced labor and child labor, maintain or obtain international phytosanitary certificates and build more responsible agriculture in the use of water and soil.

Protected agriculture is carried out under various types of structures that protect crops against environmental damage. On a global scale, protected agriculture reaches over 3,414,353ha.

The data used in this article was sourced from:  
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Eliza Galeana Eliza Galeana Junior Journalist & Industry Analyst