U.S. Producers Urging Challenge to Mexico’s Ban on GM Corn
In late 2020, Mexico enacted a phased ban on genetically modified corn and the herbicide glyphosate by 2024. Producers in the U.S. are now urging the U.S. government to challenge this ban under the USMCA free trade agreement, citing looming economic damage to both countries that could reach into the billions of dollars.
A report issued by CropLife International stated that Mexico is unable to supply enough domestic corn, nor can they source enough non-GMO corn to support its food and feed demands as of 2024.
Typically, Mexico imports about 17 million metric tons of U.S. corn per year, and this year, is on pace to import even more. More than 90 percent of the corn grown in the U.S. is GM, and considering that the necessary volumes of non-GMO corn will be available in 2024, Mexico is leaving itself open to food insecurity and price increases of the country’s staple foods.
Potentially, the U.S. could lodge a dispute under the agriculture chapter of the USMCA that stipulates cooperation between the trade agreement parties on a single government’s regulation of imports. A settlement may be applied when a country claims that one member government has nullified or impaired a benefit that was put in place when the treaty was signed.