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Mexico: Diesel shortage hits avocado exports

If the shortage in the supply of diesel continues, Michoacan could lose more than 2,100 million pesos per week in avocado exports, there would be a high unemployment for cutters, and the price of berries (strawberries, wild blackberries, and blackberries) and avocado would increase, according to businessmen in the area of Uruapan and Zamora.

Despite this, so far, the Minister of Economic Development of the State, Antonio Soto Sanchez, and local authorities have not intervened to avoid worst case scenarios.

According to the businessmen, Soto Sanchez is disregarding the protocol for these kind of issues, the market and its supplies. All the machinery for spraying, harvesting, and transporting avocados and berries works with diesel; so do the more than 400 trucks that move the fruits from Uruapan, Zamora, and Los Reyes abroad and to different regional markets in the country.

Thus, if there's no more diesel, berry production would decrease by 33.3 percent and avocado production by 50 percent. This would mean that producers would lose fruit and that it would become cheaper abroad, representing about 100 million dollars in losses, i.e. something like 2,100 million pesos every week, the producers of Uruapan stated.

If there is no diesel to transport the fruit, the producers would have to stop the harvest and thousands of cutters would lose their jobs. So far, the people in charge of the commercial area of the Central Area's Supply and Distribution Terminal in Morelia, have refused to give information about when the shortage of diesel will end.

Meanwhile, gasoline entrepreneurs have stated that Pemex has promised to supply them by Tuesday, but nobody has said if the shortage would continue.

It is worth noting that there has been a shortage of diesel since July, but that it has intensified since September, a period in which gas stations have been receiving very little fuel.

In addition to the huge losses for the avocado, berry, and lime sectors, the shortage would also affect many vegetable producers and small businesses that cater to the most remote communities, which could also lead to a food crisis.

Source: Quadratín
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