Transition Will be Rocky and Inefficient
Mexico has announced its intentions to become self-sufficient in yellow corn production and has pledged to increase spending on advances in yield and other programs to make this happen. At the same time, the country has announced a GMO corn ban, cut its agriculture budget by a third, and shifted subsidies from larger farms to smaller farms in a job-creation effort.
The U.S. exported $2.7 billion of corn to Mexico in 2019, primarily consumed as animal feed. Mexico produces approximately 1,322 million bushels of corn annually, which is primarily white corn. Mexico would need to increase its corn production by over half within the next 10 years to displace U.S. corn imports.
The Aimpoint Research WatchDesk team reports that, in the short-term, Mexico is likely to increase corn imports to offset domestic production losses as they transition into smaller-scale corn production methods. In the long-term, the country's quest for corn independence and its path to get there is likely to be rocky and inefficient. However, if the GMO ban does remain in place, the U.S. corn industry will eventually need to find a replacement for their #1 corn export market.