The National Confederation of Potato Producers of the Mexican Republic (Conpapa) spoke against the importation of fresh potatoes from the United States because they posed a high risk of containing quarantine pests. The producers in fact accused the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (Sader) and the National Health, Safety, and Agri-Food Quality Service (Senasica) of not reporting the risks involved in the importation of this product.
“This threatens the production of fresh potatoes in Mexico and of other important crops for the country, such as corn, chili, tomato, and sugar cane. Thus, it threatens the phytosanitary security of the Mexican countryside, food sovereignty, and the livelihood of thousands of agricultural producers,” Conpapa said in a statement.
“The Ministry has left 8,700 Mexican potato producers, 7 million day laborers, and 1,800,000 tons vulnerable and defenseless, limiting them to take timely preventive measures to care for and protect their activity and production,” they added.
In addition, according to potato producers, American potatoes are treated with a chemical - which isn't authorized by the Federal Commission for the Protection against Health Risks (Cofepris)– that could be a risk to the health of consumers.
"The importation of American potatoes poses a dangerous risk to the health of our soils and crops Unfortunately, this will increase our country's poverty and agri-food dependence," they concluded.