In this article, the authors assess the economic impact that HLB could have on Mexico’s citrus chain, and compare the preventive and control measures that different countries have adopted. The assessment of economic impact was carried out at three levels: primary fruit production, agro-industrial operations and the economy as a whole. The results suggest that the volume and value of the production of citrus fruits and their byproducts would be affected, as would employment (on farms and in agro-industrial operations and related businesses) and the foreign exchange earned by exports of fresh and processed citrus fruits. Other factors highlighted by the study are the high risk of an epidemic and the potential economic impact in the states of Veracruz, Colima and Michoacán, in the Pacific coastal region and in the Yucatan Peninsula, as well as less serious effects on quality, the amount of raw material available and the turnover of packing and processing plants. The study indicates that the primary sector would be the hardest hit by direct losses, with a decline in the value of production, employment, wages, food products, beverages and tobacco. Mexico responded immediately to the outbreaks of HLB that occurred in July 2009 in the Yucatan Peninsula,instituting an emergency plan to mitigate the risk of the entry and spread of the disease.


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