THE BAJA POST
Date producers of the Mexicali Valley, yield a production of 8 thousand 179 tons, mostly destined, to supply the demand in the United States, announced Juan Manuel Martínez Núñez, Representative of the national Secretary of Agriculture and Rural Development (SADER) in Baja California.
According to preliminary data issued by SADER Rural Development District 002, which includes the Río Colorado and Mexicali valleys, 938 hectares were harvested, with an average yield of 8 thousand 720 tons per hectare and generated a production value that exceeded 601 million 600 thousand pesos, approximately.
Mr. Martinez explained that in the Mexicali Valley, there are one thousand 438 hectares of date palm trees, distributed in the following Sustainable Rural Development Support Centers (CADERS): Hechicera 508 hectares; Benito Juárez 270 hectares; Cerro Prieto 198 hectares; Guadalupe Victoria 187 hectares; New Colonies 172 hectares and Delta with 103 hectares.
The Date palm (Phoenix dactilifera L.) was introduced to Mexico during the Spanish colonization, but its commercial production did not develop until the second half of the past century
The date variety that Mexican farmers mostly use, is medjool, said Martínez Núñez, the product is marketed fresh or with the so called “added value”, that is it is processed and commercialized and sold in different presentations, such as: covered with chocolate, in strips covered with chili powder and for the preparation of wine and date liquor, bread, jams and sauces, among other presentations.
The Agriculture Ministry of Mexico recognized the date as a high priority crop in 2015. Mexico has become the second largest producer of dates in America, following the United States, which is the main date producer on the American continent.
Since commercial date palm cultivation is of recent introduction in Mexico, cropping practices developed in the United States have been adjusted to Mexican environmental and economic conditions, rendering so far an excellent performance from the crop.