Business & Economy

Central Mexico mezcal producers face price hikes

Puebla, Mexico, Jun 19 (EFE).- The producers of mezcal and pulque in the Mexican municipality of Atlixco, Puebla state, are experiencing packaging shortages and price hikes, several of them told EFE.

At the first edition of the Mezcal and Pulque Fair, many producers agreed that as a result of Covid-19, sales fell. However, now that they want to resume selling, they have found that basic supplies have increased by up to 50 percent and glass bottles are scarce.

Mezcal is a traditional Mexican drink made by the distillation of maguey (agave), which is produced in large quantities in nine states.

Irene Sevilla, producer of the artisanal mezcal Las Perlas, said that she has been working on this drink all her life because her father produced it. She learned each of the production steps from him, and now they have a brand that reinforces several decades of the family’s work.

She said that at the moment they have various problems, among them the lack of bottles to package the drink, and high costs.

“The problem that most of us who pack or are dedicated to this mezcal thing have is the packaging, because it is very scarce and, apart from that fact, that the cost is very high,” she said.

Rafael Salazar, owner of the Mi General Salazar brand, told EFE that the price of glass bottles, along with corks and lids, have increased by 45 percent, which has complicated packaging.

“There has been an immense shortage of bottles, which for us is essential, because it is where we show our finished product and the essence of mezcal. Because mezcal in a plastic bottle becomes very commercial,” he said. “Before, we could go to the distribution centers and order ten or twenty boxes, now we have to wait until there is stock and buy one or two pallets to have for one or two months of work.”

Similarly, Miguel Ángel Valerio, a pulque producer, agreed that prices have increased considerably. His business saw sales hit, and although in some moments there were none, little by little they have recovered.

Pulque is a pre-Hispanic drink that results from the fermentation of maguey sap. EFE


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