After months of pressure, the price of a kilo of lemons in Mexico City has begun a period of stabilization after reaching a peak of up to 90 pesos per kilo, largely due to an attack by organized crime in Michoacán and Veracruz in the process. here.
According to Juan Carlos Anaya, director of the Agricultural Market Consulting Group (GCMA), the cost of this citrus fruit started to decrease in trend after its supply became regular following the normalization of the safety conditions in its collection.
At the moment, a kilo of this citrus is about 53 pesos in small stores while in some self-service chains, the price reaches 60 pesos per kilo.
In August of this year, citrus growers in Apatzingán, Michoacán, were forced to stop producing, packing and selling lemons due to threats and extortion from two criminal groups: Los Caballeros Templarios and Los Viagras, who maintain the dispute for citrus control.
The crime involved in the lemon business
The Jalisco New Generation Cartel (CJNG) has joined the disputes over the control of lemon production and now has its own group to face the aforementioned. This is the Limones Special Forces, an armed wing that opened last September in the Tierra Caliente region of Michoacán.
According to the Agricultural Market Consulting Group (GCMA), farmers receive 17 pesos per kilo of lemons, while cartels demand between 1.5 and 2 pesos, an increase that lemon farmers can add to product so that losses are not registered.
However, these increases have already affected the pockets of consumers who have experienced frequent increases in the price of citrus in recent weeks.
70 percent of the lemon production is kidnapped in Apatzingán, Michoacán, by two drug groups: Los Viagras and Los Caballeros Templarios, because they extort citrus growers and lemon packers, but not only that, but between the two group. in the area, according to the report made by Humberto Padgett in “Por la Mañana” with Ciro Gómez Leyva, on August 24.
Drug trafficking groups that control lemon production in Michoacán not only extort citrus growers, but also threaten them and attack packing plants with drones with explosives to instill fear and deter them to cut without their consent.