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The blue agave plant.

"Tequila is Mexico.  It is the only product that identifies us as a culture."
... Carmelita Roman

Jan 31, 2013

Hi all.

I hope all is well with everyone.   It has been a very trying time to get crops sold.  This is the same issue for all other agave growers as well..   The Cartels  have  stepped in and attempting to control all produce (blueberry, avocado, blackberry, strawberry) and agave prices in Michoacan and surrounding states.  I am trying to gather as much information as I can and will update..  

There have been some other factors happening in the State of Michoacan such as the severe violence in the state with the drug cartels and the number of kidnappings for ransom. The state of Michoacoan unfortunately is the number one state in Mexico for producing  marijuana.  The US State Department  has issued travel warnings for travel into Mexico and Michoacan as follows :

(CNN) -- The U.S. State Department has renewed a travel warning for Mexico due to drug-related violence, particularly in the northern border areas.

In addition, the authorized departure of family members of U.S. government personnel from consulates in the cities of Tijuana, Nogales, Ciudad Juarez, Nuevo Laredo, Monterrey and Matamoros remains in place.

"Recent violent attacks and persistent security concerns have prompted the U.S. Embassy to urge U.S. citizens to defer unnecessary travel to Michoacan and Tamaulipas, to parts of Chihuahua, Sinaloa, Durango, and Coahuila, and to advise U.S. citizens residing or traveling in those areas to exercise extreme caution    The cartels are moving to control and influence many agricultural businesses as well.   In fact my partner has lost 4 cousins who were caught in a crossfire a while back. That is too close to home.    I am carefully trying to schedule a trip but will have to look at hiring 24/7 security.  I have been getting reports that the current market price of the blue agave is low and that is frustrating to me.  Remember that there are many other agave growers in the same dilemma as we are.    All growers are having a hard time and the land is still tied up.   It still takes money to maintain these fields. So we are reviewing other potential markets and welcome any other ideas.   I don't necessarily want to sell at depressed prices unless there are absoutely no other options.   If you have any other suggestions please email at  

Here is another recent article on violence in Michoacan:

  (CNN) -- A top drug lord has been gunned down in Mexico after two days of shootouts between armed forces and members of a criminal organization, a national security spokesman said Friday. Nazario Moreno Gonzalez, also known as "El Chayo" or "El Doctor" was killed as part of an operation in the Mexican southwestern state of Michoacan, according to spokesman Alejandro Poire. Poire also said that members of the federal police, army, air force and navy participated in the joint operation centered in the city of Apatzingan and the surrounding mountainous region.Moreno was one of the main leaders and founders of the drug cartel known as "La Familia Michoacana," according to Poire. "This drug cartel began operations under the name of 'La Empresa' (The Enterprise) around the year 2000 and has terrorized the population in Michoacan ever since, not only trafficking and producing drugs, but also extorting, kidnapping, and murdering people," he said.The national security spokesman said that five federal police officers and three civilians have died during the joint operation, still under way as of Friday afternoon. He also said that three members of La Familia were killed and three others have been captured. "During the retreat and escape of these criminals, they have been picking up those members of the criminal group who have been wounded and presumably died," said Poire, who said it is too soon to provide an accurate number of deaths and arrests."It's time to intensify the pressure on this organization in order to diminish crime in the (Michoacan) region in an efficient and permanent way," said Poire. He said the Mexican government is sending more armed forces to the conflict zone.La Familia's stronghold is in the state of Michoacan -- also the home state of Mexican President Felipe Calderon, who sent thousands of federal troops there after declaring a crackdown on cartels at the beginning of his presidency.Gunfire from high-powered weapons greeted police when the operation began Wednesday, Poire said. From there, the violence escalated.Two minors were killed during the operation, when gunmen shot at civilian cars and later used the vehicles as barricades, Poire said Thursday. Nearby, suspected members of the cartel set trucks and buses ablaze on highways to block approaching federal police.