Lack of water, a factor for price increases in corn and beans

Lack of water, a factor for price increases in corn and beans

The effects of the drought that has impacted Mexico from 2021 to the last fortnight of May 2022 may be one of the factors in the increase in the prices of some products such as corn, beans, lemon and soybeans, experts estimated.

Luis Fernando Haro, director of the National Agricultural Council (CNA) explained that inflation and drought is an issue that the organization has been mentioning, but he maintained that despite this, the sector has remained strong, since in 2020 and 2021 recorded growth and for the current year the forecast is similar.

“Something that we have also mentioned is that at this time we have the issue of inflation of some food prices, because another factor that is interfering is the issue of drought, because logically it means that in areas of the country where they depend on conditions temporary and by not having them, food production in the country is affected,” he said.

The director of CNA indicated that one of the products that presented affectations in its consumer prices derived from the drought is the lemon, because due to the effects of climate change at the end of 2021 and the beginning of this it registered increases. At the beginning of the year the cost reached 70 pesos per kilo. Currently it ranges between 30 and 45 pesos, depending on the area of ​​the country.

In addition, he indicated that the high cost of fertilizers and the issue of insecurity are factors that contributed to the increases.

“The drought also has repercussions on livestock production, not only on agriculture, it is something that we are seeing as a worrying issue,” he said.

For her part, Christian Domínguez Sarmiento, a researcher at the Department of Atmospheric Sciences of the Institute of Atmospheric Sciences and Climate Change at UNAM, indicated that the products that have been mainly affected by the issue of drought and inflation are corn. , beans, soybeans.

“The drought coupled with inflation causes the costs of these products to rise and which in turn has an impact on consumer prices, usually the first thing we see is (rise in) tortillas, although corn is used for other things like cattle feed, those are the havoc for human consumption,” he said.

In the case of corn, the general average cost for May this year is 26.2 pesos per kilo, while the previous month’s record was the same cost.

However, the average price for beans at the national level was 34.07 pesos per kilo and the previous record was 33.8 pesos.

Prices

As reported by the Inegi, the National Consumer Price Index stood at 7.65% at an annual rate during May. This data was slightly lower than the price increase presented in April of 7.68 percent.

Similarly, the Inegi revealed that the price of agricultural products increased by 13.08% annually in May, the above derived from the result of a rise of 12.88% of fruits and vegetables, in addition to 13.24% of livestock.

According to the Drought Monitor, the states that have their entire area under some condition of this phenomenon are: Aguascalientes, Baja California Sur, Coahuila, Guanajuato, Querétaro, San Luis Potosí, Sonora and Zacatecas.

The main agricultural products of these states are corn, beans, tomatoes, wheat, sorghum and in some cases, such as San Luis Potosí and Sonora, prickly pears and grapes, according to information from the federal government.

“It is important that we live so that it is considered in the future in an issue where the support programs for water return, the technification of irrigation that gives certainty even in drought conditions, to be able to produce and continue more food,” he said. Luis Fernando Haro.

In the same way, he regretted that the federal government has made the decision to eliminate the agricultural insurance program in 2021, since this was a monetary support for producers in the face of the effects of some weather event.

There was a lower production derived from a recurrent drought that is affecting the crops in general terms, at the end of the day because the production processes are not developed adequately. Unfortunately, the support that existed in the case of agricultural insurance disappeared and, logically, that will also affect producers in the Mexican countryside”, he indicated.

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