Mexico has banned imports of Uruguayan rice after finding khapra beetle in a container earlier this month. The National Health Service, Food Safety and Food Quality (SENASICA) in Mexico has withdrawn Uruguay from the list of approved countries that can supply milled rice to Mexico.
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“Uruguay has a 60 percent market share for Mexico’s milled rice imports this year,” said USA Rice President & CEO Betsy Ward. “Even though the government of Uruguay is working to re-establish import requirements and resume trade, the U.S., as the second largest supplier, has an opportunity to showcase the quality and reliability of U.S. milled rice to the trade in Mexico while Uruguay is out of the market.”
Argentina, Brazil, Guyana, India, Italy, Paraguay, Thailand, and Vietnam can also supply milled rice to Mexico; their combined exports to Mexico in the first eight months of 2019 amounted to less than 5,000 MT. Uruguay has supplied 72,000 MT and the U.S. 45,000 MT.
USA Rice is organizing a trade mission to Mexico in November to meet with importers, millers, and wholesalers to discuss ways to increase U.S. exports to Mexico.