The heavy rains of the past few days in the region of Soconusco, in the state of Chiapas, have caused irreversible damage to the rambutan harvest in the municipalities of Metapa, Frontera Hidalgo, Suchiate, Tuxtla Chico, and Cacahoatan, among others. According to the producers, the fruit was mainly affected by thermal shock, caused by the recent tropical storms that have hit the state.
"20, 30, and even up to 60 percent of fruit fell due to the excess of water and the sudden appearance of the sun," stated Victor Perez Saldaña, one of the main producers in the region.
According to Saldaña, this harvest's first cut was scheduled for July and they expected to harvest an average of 1,200 tons, 80% of which would be exported to the United States and Canada. The yields, however, are now expected to be lower due to the havoc that the tropical storms wreaked on the production, which could continue to diminish if the storms continue. There is even talk of total crop losses.
Hundreds of families in the region, who live on the economy generated by the rambutan, expected good profits from the export of this exotic fruit that only costs 16 pesos in the national market, as its price abroad fluctuates at 35 pesos per kilogram.
The producers of Soconusco have called on the state and the federal government to consider some emergency aid program that will allow them to overcome this crisis that threatens to escalate if the meteorological phenomena continue.