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Belize cattle exports to Mexico moving up to 800 head per week

Posted: Thursday, March 24, 2022. 1:58 pm CST.

By Rubén Morales Iglesias: Belize’s cattle exports to Mexico are now moving up to approximately 800 head of cattle per week, according to Prime Minister John Briceño. That represents approximately $850,000 in foreign exchange.

“From day one since our Administration took office, we took swift action to rescue and revive the live cattle trade with regional partners,” said Prime Minister John Briceño on social media in reference to cattle exports to Mexico.

Present at Shipyard, Orange Walk District, on Tuesday as 266 head of cattle were being exported to Mexico, Prime Minister Briceño said he was excited that Mexican importer SuKarne and the cattle ranchers were working out an agreement to make weekly exports to Mexico.

“Today, I stood with Hon. Abelardo Mai, Minister for Agriculture and Food Security (MAFSE) witnessing as we exported another shipment of heads of cattle. Data shows that we export about 800 heads of cattle to Mexico weekly.”

The Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Immigration Eamon Courtenay, and Minister of State in the Ministry of Finance Christopher Coye joined Minister Mai at Shipyard to have a close look at the cattle trade and the new quarantine corral facilities at Shipyard in the Orange Walk District.

“This is Plan Belize in action,” said Prime Minister Briceño.

Being a cattle rancher, himself the Prime Minister said he understood too well how the industry works acknowledging that cash flow and infrastructure are imperative.

“That has always been the problem, that cattle ranching requires a lot of capital and it’s a long-term investment and if you do not have the cash flow, then most ranchers cannot afford it,” PM Briceño said.

The Prime Minister recognized the multimillion-dollar investment by cattle rancher Johann Wall and his associates at Shipyard for the cattle ranchers to be able to export an average of 800 cattle per week.

Minister Mai noted the new cattle export corral in Shipyard which can afford that level of exports acknowledging that it’s now a daily routine and that cattle exporting to Mexico has become a full-time operation.

He noted that cashflow has to be close to $1 million dollars weekly considering that they not only have to buy cattle from other ranchers but that they have to quarantine the cattle for 21 days to ensure that the animals are clear of diseases before exporting.

What’s more, the pasture has to be certified by the Belize Agricultural Health Authority (BAHA) and the corral by the Mexico animal health authority, Senasica, he said.

Cattle are also exported to Guatemala, in fact, in bigger numbers than to Mexico at present. The Prime Minister Briceño said he was happy to see that the kinks have been worked out and that there is competition because we are now selling to Mexico and Guatemala which allows for Belize cattle ranchers to get a better price.


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