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Nestlé sweeteners, obstacles for national coffee growers

Adjustments in 44% of the first circle of the President

Angelica Enciso L.

Newspaper La Jornada
Monday, July 25, 2022, p. 17

Mexican coffee growers, who are in the most marginalized regions of the country, face difficulties in placing the aromatic, because for decades Nestlé has pushed the consumption of the soluble product and recently, together with Andatti, in Oxxo stores (owned by Femsa) , promote sweeteners that are presented as Cappuccino coffee.

In addition, Nestlé, California and United Agroindustries of Mexico control the national market and punish the farmer with low prices, said Fernando Celis, adviser to the National Coordinator of Coffee Organizations (CNOC).

For the type of Nestlé cappuccino sachets, international rules establish, for example, that they must contain a third of coffee; however, they have 4.8 percent and the rest are artificial flavors, sweeteners and preservatives.

Each envelope costs eight pesos, while one of those drinks in a cafeteria is worth no less than 25 pesos, he added.

Also Andatti, which is sold in the 17,000 Oxxo stores and offers product presentations cappuccino type with 2 percent of the grain; the rest are fats and carbohydrates, as noted on the label.

In these establishments alone, 800,000 cups of coffee were sold per day before the pandemic.

Celis indicated that the Swiss transnational sells a 400-gram can for 180 pesos, in which it is mentioned that it yields 200 cups, so it costs less than one peso each, and they have a product style of potin which piloncillo and cinnamon are artificial. All of these should be in the candy area, because they are sweeteners, not coffee. The Ministry of Economy should regulate them, but has not done so, she commented.

In an interview, he said that this company currently ensures that of 10 cups of coffee that are consumed, six are soluble; however, he considered that these figures are not correct, since grain consumption has grown in the country, although with the increase in the price of food and gasoline, there is less income to buy grain coffee and soluble coffee is preferred. Nestlé wants to control a greater percentage of national consumption. They have said that since people are very poor in Mexico you have to sell cheap coffee.

He considered that the United States Department of Agriculture – which coincides with what Nestlé points out – overestimates the consumption of soluble in the country, but in recent reports it does not take into account the variable of the pandemic.

He recalled that since the last decade, with the growth of cafeterias, the consumption of the aromatic rose, although the pandemic caused a reduction with the closure of these, restaurants and hotels.

According to the International Coffee Organization, the pandemic caused a drop in the consumption of the beverage, while at the same time impacting supply, since the workforce for harvesting was reduced, private investment was lacking and chains were impacted. supply, said its director, José Sette, in a forum.

The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development indicates that there are 500,000 producer families in 4,500 communities in 14 states, predominantly in Chiapas, Veracruz, Puebla and Oaxaca. Mexico has an annual production of 4 million bags and is number 10 as a coffee producer in the world.

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