The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) estimated that corn imports to Mexico would grow 1.8% in the 2021/2022 marketing season, compared to the previous cycle.
With this, corn imports to Mexico would amount to 16.8 million tons.
In this way, these external purchases would make it possible to equalize the relatively upward demand for food consumption.
At the same time, the USDA expects Mexican corn exports to remain unchanged at 900,000 tons in the 2021/2022 marketing year, due to an oversupplied and highly competitive international market.
Strong demand for corn as animal feed and industrial consumption has required imports to complement national production.
Meanwhile, growth in feed use, particularly for the poultry sector, has been the main driver and has maintained demand for corn imports in recent years.
The USDA projects this trend to continue through the remainder of the 2021/2022 marketing year to meet the increasing demands of the animal feed and livestock sectors.
The USDA also estimates that high corn futures prices will have a limited impact on feed-related trade costs, particularly if prices stabilize for the second half of 2021, as predicted by some analysts in Mexico.
Mexico is the seventh largest corn producer in the world, with about 2.5 percent of world corn production.
Corn continues to be grown throughout the year for two seasons: spring/summer (April-March) and fall/winter (October-September). Approximately 72% of Mexican corn is obtained from the spring/summer season on average.
Likewise, corn continues to be the most important crop in Mexico in terms of production and consumption.
Production in Mexico is diverse, from large-scale commercial irrigation operations to very small farms that grow local varieties on rainfed plots for their subsistence.
Despite its relevance as a staple crop, several factors continue to prevent an increase in maize production (as well as other coarse grains and cereals) in Mexico. The main restriction is low productivity.