U.S. files biotech corn complaint against Mexico

August 24, 2023

The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative requested a dispute panel to resolve its complaints about Mexico’s plans to restrict imports of bioengineered corn. The panel would be established under the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement.

“The United States is challenging measures set out in Mexico’s Feb. 13, 2023, decree, specifically the ban on use of biotech corn in tortillas or dough, and the instruction to Mexican government agencies to gradually substitute—i.e., ban—the use of biotech corn in all products for human consumption and for animal feed,” USTR said.  “Mexico’s measures are not based on science and undermine the market access it agreed to provide in the USMCA.”

The formal complaint caps a process that began Jan. 30, when the U.S. requested information about Mexico’s policies. Then in March, the U.S. requested dispute settlement consultations under USMA. This formal complaint this month reflects the failure of those talks.

In a statement,  Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack said: “By requesting the establishment of a dispute settlement panel with Mexico, the United States is continuing to exercise its rights under the USMCA to ensure that U.S. producers and exporters have full and fair access to the Mexican market. We will continue to support fair, open, science- and rules-based trade, which serves as the foundation of the USMCA as it was agreed to by all parties.”