Unable to identify replacement, Mexico delays ban on herbicide glyphosate

MEXICO CITY, March 27 (Reuters) - Mexico said it would delay a ban on the use of the herbicide glyphosate after it was unable to identify a substitute, rolling back a commitment that is part of a larger plan to reduce consumption of genetically-modified corn.

The Latin American country last year, in a modification to an earlier decree, set March 31, 2024 as the end of a transition period to revoke authorizations and permits to import, produce, distribute and use glyphosate, the weed-killer found in Roundup, a plan it has had since late 2020.

In a statement late Monday, the government said the decree could not be enforced because the conditions to replace glyphosate in Mexican agriculture have not been specified.

"The interest of safeguarding the country's agri-food security must prevail," the statement said.

Glyphosate can be used for maintaining agricultural production, reducing the possible impact due to the its substitution and until there are alternative eco-friendly practices that allow its discontinuation, the statement said.

"We are working to find options that are available in the necessary quantities for marketing chains at the national level and that are affordable for all types of producers," the statement said.

Mexico's plan to phase out glyphosate is part of a decree that also seeks to prohibit the use of GM corn for human consumption, such as flour, dough, or tortilla made from the grain over health and safety concerns, an issue that has led to a trade dispute with its largest trading partner, the United States, from which it imports millions of metric tons of corn per year.

A dispute settlement panel is in progress under the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, also known as the USMCA.

Washington argues Mexico's decree banning imports of GM corn used for tortillas is not based on science and violates its commitments under the USMCA, which has been in place since 2020.

(Reporting by Cassandra Garrison; editing by Costas Pitas)

((Cassandra.Garrison@thomsonreuters.com; +52 55 6200 7873;))

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

More Related Articles

Info icon

This data feed is not available at this time.

Sign up for the TradeTalks newsletter to receive your weekly dose of trading news, trends and education. Delivered Wednesdays.