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How cartels seized Mexico’s avocado business

Kai Ryssdal and Bennett Purser Nov 26, 2019
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An avocado orchard in the Mexican state of Michoacan.
Gary Coronado / Los Angeles Times © 2019

The vast majority of avocados consumed in the United States are imported from Michoacán, Mexico. American demand for the avocado fuels Michoacán’s $2.4 billion avocado export business. Mexican cartels, evolved beyond drug trafficking, are taking over operations.

Extortion and theft in the local avocado industry is rocketing.

“These cartels have shown an amazing ability to diversify, that’s why they’re in the avocado business to begin with.”

Kate Linthicum, Los Angeles Times

Kate Linthicum, a foreign corespondent for the Los Angeles Times, spoke with “Marketplace” host Kai Ryssdal about her reporting on the embattled avocado trade.

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