Potatoes To Mexico Delayed Pt 2

Potatoes To Mexico Delayed Pt 2

Bob Larson
Bob Larson
I’m Bob Larson. After 20+ years of back-and-forth negotiations, the U.S. potato industry enjoyed this past Christmas as much as any in recent history after an agreement was signed that all but assured greater access to Mexico.

But after a lot of backpedaling by Mexico since the year began, National Potato Council CEO Kam Quarles says it’s time to fix this …

QUARLES … “Mexico has been difficult to deal with, with USDA on a host of agricultural imports that Mexico really, they come up with a lot of excuses, but the core answer is they don’t want to have to deal with competition.”

This, Quarles says is a common theme for Mexico …

QUARLES … “They have had, effectively, no imports come into Mexico. They’ve had complete control of their own country’s market for decades. And, they view any type of competition as a threat to their bottom line and they’re going to work as hard as they can to make sure they never have to face that competition.”

If Mexico was to live up to its end of the agreement, Quarles says it would be a win-win for both parties …

QUARLES … “Because it is such a constrained supply of potatoes that are available to Mexican consumers, the potato industry down there that is fighting us so hard to keep us out, will actually be tremendous beneficiaries along with U.S. growers.”

Quarles says they’re feeling like Charlie Brown when Lucy keeps pulling the football away. He says negotiators may have to play tough with Mexican imports into the U.S. before this ends.

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