Mexico Lifts Ban on US Potato Imports
United States potato growers are celebrating a major victory following a decision by Mexico’s Supreme Court allowing for a lift on the U.S. fresh potato import ban. The 5-0 ruling overturned a lower court’s decision from 2017. Presently, Mexico only allowed U.S. fresh potatoes into its first 26 km from the border. The expansion could result in up to USD200m in estimated sales per year, in five years.
“This ruling is consistent with Mexico’s obligations under the USMCA and the WTO. It represents a major step forward in the U.S. potato industry’s efforts to provide consumers throughout Mexico access to fresh, healthy U.S.-grown potatoes,” Jared Balcom, vice-president of trade affairs for the National Potato Council said in a press release.
Jaren Raybould, chair of Potatoes USA added: “We are hopeful that with this ruling the authorities will quickly re-implement the market access agreement and allow for high quality U.S. potatoes to be enjoyed throughout Mexico”.
The Mexican government allowed full access before, in 2014, but then the National Confederation of Potato Growers of Mexico (CONPAPA) sued claiming Mexican regulators had no authority to determine if agricultural imports can enter the country. The latest Supreme Court ruling rejected CONPAPA’s argument.