Another agricultural export
With the neo-liberal regime in Mexico having systematically destroyed the rural economy, it’s possibly good news that at least one Mexican agricultural export is growing. Alas, it’s opium poppies.
Over the last 13 years (since Vicente Fox’s election), the amount of land under cultivation for poppies has grown 181% to 12,000 hectares. While Colombia was the #1 producer and exporter of heroin in the Americas, Mexico has taken the lead.
Colombians claim the drop in their own production is due to declining demand in Europe, however it may be that the Mexican producers have more experience in the trade (Sinaloa has exported opium and opium related products since the 1880s) and Colombian exporters just haven’t been able to find new markets.
Isn’t “free trade” wonderful?