Mexico Can and Must Be Self-Sufficient in Food Again
Mexico can readily produce enough grain to feed
150 million people, according to Antonio Turrent, former Director
of the National Institute of Forestry and Agricultural Research.
Mexico's population of about 110 million has become dangerously
dependent on food imports to meet over one third of its basic
food consumption needs. Under conditions of imposed import
dependency, and skyrocketing grain prices, a shock front has hit
Mexico and the issue of food has exploded as a major subject of
As in Argentina, the discussion centers on the need for
government dirigist measures in order to feed people before
allowing the cartels to export, and on the ability to sharply
increase domestic food production. In Argentina, the Kirchner
goverment is actually taking such steps; in Mexico, various
institutions are making these demans of the free-trade-dominated
Mexican grain production can be quickly increased, according
to Turrent's remarks published in the May 13 La Jornada, by:
- Irrigating some 2 million hectares of arable land in
Sonora, Sinaloa, and five other states. This coincides with the
PLHINO projection of irrigating some 800,000 hectares in Sonora
and Sinaloa alone.
- Planting corn on 9 million hectares of fertile land in the
southeast of the country, currently used as pasture land.
- Returning to corn production in six other states where it
has been largely abandoned, due to globalization and free trade
decimation of Mexico's agriculture.