Mexico: Coconut production falls by 99% in Veracruz

Coconut production in the state of Veracruz has fallen by 99 percent due to the lethal yellowing disease and a complete lack of replanting, said the representative of the Coastal Society of Mexico and Coordinator of the National Council of Producers in the State, Carmen Belen Lihaut Sequera.

She also stated that during the 2013-2014 project, producers had planted 1,700 hectares of coconut that were tolerant to the lethal yellowing disease.

"Coconut production has fallen by 99 percent since 2008, when we started to see the disease, but since 2010 production began to disappear completely. Currently we are awaiting the production of the 1,700 hectares that were replanted here in Veracruz. Other producers have managed to make a successful plantation, but we need to take care of the problems in Veracruz," she said.

More than 700 producers, who were dedicated to the plantation of coconut, are affected by this crisis across the entire state of Veracruz, she said. Currently, there are only 1,200 coconut producers, who are still reluctant to leave this market.

"The coconut plant is going to die. It is going to become extinct. The Creole variety of the coasts of the Gulf of Mexico is dying, and replanting them is urgent," she added.

She also said that the producers of coconut had been forced to bring the plant that is 85 percent tolerant to the lethal yellowing disease from the certified nurseries of Colima, themselves.

This disease attacks many species of palms, including some species of commercial interest such as Cocos nucifera (the coconut tree), she stated.

Finally, she urged the authorities of the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Rural Development, Fisheries and Food (Sagarpa), the Secretariat of Agricultural Development, Rural and Fisheries (Sedarpa) and the Secretariat of the Environment (Sedema), to solve the problem by replanting the coconut trees.


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