Now that President Donald Trump has threatened to impose tariffs up to 25% on all Mexican goods, it seems timely to remember that Mexico is by far the largest supplier of produce imports to the United States.
If the 25% tariff goes into effect, it will cost American consumers of Mexican produce $3 billion, said the Fresh Produce Association of the Americas in a statement Friday.
Some tropical items would be especially hard-hit. Roughly two-thirds of our mangoes, three-quarters of our papayas and 98% of our limes come from Mexico.
Mexico supplies three-quarters of our avocados. California-grown avocados are in peak season now through midsummer but can’t satisfy more than a fraction of domestic demand, and this year’s crop is small.
The United States is least dependent on Mexico for produce during the summer, when many domestic crops such as tomatoes and berries are abundant.
American growers of crops such as apples, cherries, peaches and potatoes would suffer if Mexico, an important market, imposes countervailing duties. American corn, soybean, meat and dairy farmers would be particularly hard-hit. Some domestic growers might make more money if Mexican competitors are burdened by tariffs, but many American farming and marketing companies, including Driscoll’s, Sunkist, NatureSweet and Taylor Farms, grow or source in Mexico.