The U.S. has stopped importing avocados from Tancitaro, Michoacan, Mexico, over security concerns.
In mid-November, the U.S. Embassy Regional Security Office, in coordination with the U.S. Department of Agriculture¡¯s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, decided to temporarily suspend avocado export activities in Tancitaro in order to ensure the safety of APHIS employees, said Workabeba Yigzaw, an APHIS spokeswoman.
"No APHIS employees were directly threatened, and the suspension of export activities is expected to be only temporary," Yigzaw said.
The USDA did not comment on whether the action was related to the illegal drug trade. The trade group Avocados From Mexico did not respond to a request for comment.
APHIS inspectors in Mexico work in local packing facilities and conduct avocado field surveys.
On April 25, two packinghouses in Tancitaro burned down, but effects on shipments to the U.S. were not affected. Pharr, Texas-based Agroexport was the owner of one of the sheds.