June 7, 2023
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US raises ‘grave concerns’ over Mexico’s anti-GMO farm policies

WASHINGTON, Jan 23 (Reuters) — US farm and commerce officers raised “grave concerns” over Mexico’s agricultural biotechnology policies in conferences with their Mexican counterparts on Monday, as lingering disagreements threaten a long time of booming corn commerce between the neighbors.

Washington’s considerations middle on the Mexican president’s push to ban so-called biotech corn, or varieties developed with genetically modified organisms (GMOs), from getting into Mexico whether it is destined for human consumption. America accounts for many of Mexican corn imports.

“We made it clear today that if this issue is not resolved, we will consider all options, including taking formal steps to enforce our rights under the US-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA),” the workplace of US Commerce Consultant (USTR) Katherine Tai stated in a press release on Monday.

“Mexico’s proposed approach, which is not grounded in science, still threatens to disrupt billions of dollars in bilateral agricultural trade, cause serious economic harm to US farmers and Mexican livestock producers, and stifle important innovations needed to help producers respond to pressing climate and food security challenges,” it added.

US officers traveled to Mexico to debate Mexico’s method to agricultural biotech merchandise.

Mexico’s agriculture ministry declined to remark, whereas the nation’s financial system ministry, which handles commerce, didn’t instantly present remark.

The international locations have been at loggerheads over a decree issued by Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador in 2020 that sought to part out imports of genetically modified corn and the herbicide glyphosate by 2024.

Mexico determined to postpone its ban of GMO corn purchases from america till 2025, a choice deemed passable by the US authorities, Mexican Agriculture Minister Victor Villalobos stated final month.

Mexico is without doubt one of the largest patrons of US corn with American farmers sending about 17 million tonnes of principally GMO yellow corn to Mexico yearly, nearly all of which is used for animal feed. Mexican officers have stated they’ll maintain importing GM corn for animal feed.

US officers are “making it crystal clear” that Mexico should abide by its USMCA commitments and this “is a significant development and good news for corn growers,” stated Tom Haag, president of the Nationwide Corn Growers Affiliation.

Biotech trade group BIO stated it appreciated US efforts to get Mexico to “maintain a science-based risk regulatory system,” in response to assertion from Beth Ellikidis, vp for agriculture and atmosphere.

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