Angry Mexican Farmers Target Avocado Orchards That Suck Up Too Much Water

"VILLA MADERO, Mexico — As a drought in Mexico drags on, angry subsistence farmers have begun taking direct action on thirsty avocado orchards and berry fields of commercial farms that are drying up streams in the mountains west of Mexico City.

Rivers and even whole lakes are disappearing in the once green and lush state of Michoacan, as the drought combines with a surge in the use of water for the country’s lucrative export crops, led by avocados.

In recent days, subsistence farmers and activists from the Michoacan town of Villa Madero organized teams to go into the mountains and rip out illegal water pumps and breach unlicensed irrigation holding ponds.

A potential conflict looms with avocado growers — who are often sponsored by, or pay protection money to, drug cartels."

Armando Solís reports for the Associated Press April 24, 2024.

Source: AP, 04/29/2024