By vast

Published: August 4, 2018

Category: Non-GMO News, The Organic & Non-GMO Report Newsletter

The victory of Andrés Manuel López Obrador and his Morena party in July’s Mexican elections has stunned international observers. The center-left insurgency received an estimated twice the number of votes of its nearest rival in a multi-party presidential race, winning more than 50 percent of the vote, several important governorships including the first woman to run Mexico City, and an absolute majority in the House of Representatives and the Senate. However the final tally ends up, López Obrador has a resounding mandate for change.

Among those rejoicing now over López Obrador’s victory are Mexico’s farmers, who have been largely abandoned by the government while unregulated imports of below-cost maize, wheat, pork, and other agricultural goods flooded Mexican markets under NAFTA.

Many placed their faith in López Obrador after he endorsed the Plan de Ayala 2.0, a radical platform put forward in early 2018 by a revitalized farmers’ movement. Echoing the platform, López Obrador on the campaign trail called for a return to self-sufficiency in maize and other basic food crops, a reduction in import dependence on the U.S., a shift away from chemical-intensive industrial agriculture and genetically modified crops toward more sustainable practices, and a decisive reorientation of government farm subsidies toward small- and medium-scale producers.

The current government has supported Monsanto and other seed companies in their campaign to grow GM maize in Mexico. Citizen groups and the courts have prevented the controversial move citing threats to Mexico’s native maize varieties. López Obrador can end the controversy by withdrawing government approval of the companies’ permits.

Source: Food Tank

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