Avocado imports from Mexico have once again resumed according to an announcement from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). Shipments of avocados from Michoacán, Mexico had been suspended after an inspector from USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) had been threatened. After a week of negotiations between both countries, APHIS’ avocado inspection program has been reactivated.
“This is possible due to the rapid response and cooperation of the governor of Michoacán, Mexico’s federal government, and the Mexican Association of Avocado Producers and Exporters (APEAM),” said Ken Salazar, U.S. Ambassador to Mexico. “I thank them for working with my security colleagues in the U.S. Embassy to enact the measures that ensure the safety of our APHIS inspectors in the field.”
The trade relationship between the U.S. and Michoacán is substantial, with the Mexican state being the only state approved to export avocados to the U.S. Nearly 80 percent of the avocados exported from the state came to the U.S. in 2021. Of all avocado imports into the U.S., the vast majority come from Mexico. More than one million metric tons of avocados from Mexico were imported in 2021, at a value of $2.8 billion. USDA indicated that coordination between the two countries will continue to ensure the viability of the trade relationship between the two countries, as well as the health and safety of all personnel.
“The safety of our USDA inspectors is paramount. We are grateful that both countries have come to a resolution so that the U.S. and Mexico can continue our positive trading relationship,” said Robert Guenther, Chief Public Policy Officer for the International Fresh Produce Association. “IFPA looks forward to continuing to work with businesses on both sides of the border and their respective governments to continue to monitor and address these issues, so consumers can continue to enjoy uninterrupted access to fresh produce.”