Mexico: Apple industry head warns of U.S. imports amid record forecasts -

Mexico: Apple industry head warns of U.S. imports amid record forecasts

Countries More News Top Stories
Mexico: Apple industry head warns of U.S. imports amid record forecasts

With Mexico expecting to see record apple production this year, an industry head has warned large exports from north of the border over the coming months could hurt local producers. manzanas_36193732 small

The Latin American country has forecast a production of 18 million boxes equivalent to 716,865 metric tons (MT), according to Chihuahua State Fruit Growers' Regional Agricultural Union (Unifrut) president Ricardo Márquez Portillo.

The volumes are likely to represent a total value of around MXN4.2 billion (US$250 million).

Chihuahua, located in the north of the country bordering Texas and New Mexico, is the biggest apple-producing state in Mexico, with around 80% of production.

There are some 28,515 hectares (70,462 acres) dedicated to apple production in the state, and almost all harvesting operations take place between August and November.

The industry is also a source of work for some 22,000 people, but Márquez Portillo warned these jobs, along with the 2,500 apple producers, could be in jeopardy as increased imports from the U.S. are expected this year.

He said the domestic market could become saturated and prices could drop significantly as they did in 2013.

"Two years ago imported apples flooded the Mexican market and caused loses for Mexican growers equivalent to 25% of their total revenues," Márquez Portillo said in a release.

"We are following the legal avenues with the Federal Government’s Secretary of the Economy to stop the dumping that has existed with North American apple exports.

"Now we hope to have the opportunity to capitalize on our production to maintain our investments and the thousands of jobs that we generate."

According to the release, between January and July 2015 11.6 million boxes of apples were imported, with a record 99% of these coming from the U.S. A further 2.7 million boxes are expected to be imported until December 2015.

The U.S. state of Washington is expecting to produce some 125 million boxes of fruit this year, down from the previous season's 140 million.

Washington Apple Commission president Todd Fryhover recently told Mexico was a 'critical partner' in the success of the apple industry, saying it functioned a lot like the U.S. market.

Related story: Mexico starts anti-dumping investigation into U.S. apple imports


Subscribe to our newsletter