Costa Rica’s milk sales were of $93 million in 2011, while Guatemala’s production has dropped so much that it had to import 66% of its demand.
Guatemala produces 1.8 million liters of milk, according to the Chamber of Milk Producers of Guatemala, which barely covers 34% of its domestic demand."In the past 40 years, it has gone from being the country with the highest milk production in the region, to the largest importer of dairy products", said Nery Orrego, CEO of the Chamber of Milk Producers, reported Prensalibre.com.
Five years ago, there were 10 companies producing over 1.000 liters of milk a day; now there are 60.
The highest growth rate was observed in the department of Petén, where production has topped 40.000 daily liters, according to data from CPLG, the Guatemalan Dairy Producers Chamber.
Mónica Rosales, president of CPLG, commented that “in the 70s, the Government imposed maximum prices for milk, as it was considered a basic good. This discouraged domestic production. It is reported that in those times, the finest dairy herds were sold to other Central American countries. However, in the last 8 years there have been renewed efforts to ‘organize and strengthen’ the sector”.
As part of the Agritrade Platform, Guatemala will participate for the 27th time in PMA Fresh Summit, the most important international trade show and convention of fruits and vegetables in the United States, which will take place at Anaheim Convention Center, California from October 17th to 19th.