US Rejects Mexico’s Proposals for GM Corn Trade
Home > Agribusiness & Food > Weekly Roundups

US Rejects Mexico’s Proposals for GM Corn Trade

Photo by:   Couleur - Pixabay
Share it!
Eliza Galeana By Eliza Galeana | Junior Journalist & Industry Analyst - Wed, 01/25/2023 - 11:28

Among this week’s top stories, US authorities threaten to take formal action under the USMCA over the GM corn ban. Meanwhile, grain imports break records in 2022. 

Ready for more? Here is your weekly roundup!

US Threatens to Take Formal Steps Over GM Corn Ban Dispute

On Jan. 23, 2023, Alexis Taylor, the Undersecretary for Trade and Foreign Agricultural Affairs, United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and Doug McKalip, Chief Agricultural Negotiator,  the US Trade Representative Office (USTR), traveled to Mexico City to address concerns regarding Mexico’s biotechnology policies. In a further statement, officials stressed that Mexico’s proposal to postpone the GM corn ban until 2025 was insufficient to meet the US’ needs. They argued that Mexico's proposed approach still threatens to disrupt billions of dollars in bilateral agricultural trade, cause serious economic harm to US farmers and Mexican livestock producers and stifle important innovations needed to help producers respond to pressing climate and food security challenges. 

Grain Import Costs Break Records at the End of 2022

The Agricultural Markets Advisory Group reported that by the end of 2022, Mexico’s imports of basic grains and oilseeds closed with a total cost of US$17.7 billion, the largest expense registered since 1993. Mexico’s grain purchases during 2022 equaled a 17.6% rise compared to the US$15 billion spent in 2021. However, in terms of volume, Mexico imported 38 million tonnes of grains in 2022, 1.5% less than the 38.7 million t purchased in 2021. The 17.6% increase in value is therefore directly related to high prices and not caused by a greater volume in purchases. According to analysts inflation in food products is a direct consequence of the war between Ukraine and Russia.

Increasing US Egg Prices Trigger Smuggling Along Mexican Border

According to Border Report, US Customs and Border Protection reported a 108% increase in seized egg products and poultry in El Paso and San Diego from Oct. 1 to Dec. 31, 2022. CBS reported that a dozen eggs cost nearly US$8 in some border cities like San Ysidro, compared to less than US$3 in Tijuana, Mexico. Since 2022, egg cost increases have been driven by growing customer demand along with a decrease in domestic egg supplies caused by an avian flu pandemic that has greatly affected US poultry flocks. The USDA pointed out that nearly 58 million birds have been infected with the disease, while more than 43 million egg-laying hens were culled. The outbreak has been qualified as the worst of its kind in US history.

Mexico Must Promote Use of Technology in Agriculture

The Trust Funds for Rural Development (FIRA) organized the first Technological Innovation Caravan, intending to present different modernization and digitization initiatives to farmers in Mexico. According to a study performed by the University of Guanajuato, the average use of computer technologies within the Mexican agri-food sector is less than 38%. During the event, agricultural entrepreneurs agreed on the need for modernization. Experts concluded that to strengthen the agri-food sector, Mexico should promote technological literacy campaigns, provide more internet access and prioritize the use of cell phones as a valuable tool for agriculture.

Capacity Building Key to Future of Regenerative Agriculture

Regenerative agriculture is an outcome-based food production system that nurtures and restores soil health, protects the climate, water resources and biodiversity, and enhances farm agri-food productivity and profitability. According to Javier Valdés, CEO for North Latin America, Syngenta has been leading sustainable agriculture around the world since 2014. In early 2022, the company launched #PROAgricultor, an open-source platform, directed to everyone involved in the agri food production chain. Their goal with the platform was to set the benchmark on the key topics of sustainable agriculture in an easy, practical and resourceful way to quickly generate 101 knowledge in topics like soil health, biodiversity, safe use of agrochemicals, integrated pest management and regenerative agriculture. Click on the link to find out more about this. 

Traceability a Key Element in the Export of Mexican Avocados

Traceability systems in food products allow to understand where a product comes from and affords the timely removal from the market of food that does not meet safety standards. The Association of Producers and Packers of Avocado Exporters of Mexico, APEAM A.C., has a traceability system that responds to the obligations established for producers and packers by the Binational Work Plan. In order to make the system more efficient, APEAM A.C. developed SICOA, a computer platform that allows it to take advantage of technological benefits in favor of traceability.

Photo by:   Couleur - Pixabay

You May Like

Most popular