Continued growth of Dutch agri-food exports to Mexico; Dutch agri-food imports from Mexico fall

Agri-food exports from The Netherlands to Mexico continue on their growth path and reached a record total value of € 522 million in 2022, with vegetable seeds, fertilizers and dairy products topping the list. Meanwhile, Mexican agri-food exports to The Netherlands continue to fall, with a particularly sharp decline in avocado exports in 2022. Mexico is however diversifying its agri-food exports to The Netherlands, with tequila, nuts and coffee products showing the highest growth rates in 2022.  

Beeld: ©William William

Record export value

The exports of Dutch agri-food products to Mexico continued its upward trend: in 2022, their value reached a new record at € 522 million, a 7% increase compared to 2021. Between 2017 and 2022, Dutch agri-food exports to Mexico grew an impressive 53%, from € 341 million in 2017 to € 522 million in 2022.

Vegetable seeds, fertilizers and cheese

Vegetable seeds, fertilizers and dairy products top the list of agri-food products exported to Mexico. Vegetable seed exports to Mexico have more than doubled in value over the last five years: from € 70 million in 2017 to almost € 145 million in 2022. Over the last three years, Mexico has been the second largest buyer of vegetable seeds from The Netherlands, beaten only by Spain. Impressive growth was also shown by fertilizer exports to Mexico: their export value rose 43%, from € 45 million to € 64 million, thanks largely to increased fertilizer prices. Dutch dairy products, primarily cheese, also continue to do well on the Mexican market: dairy exports have shown a steady rise  over the last three years and are now back at pre-covid levels with € 44.5 million. Cheese made up the bulk of Dutch dairy exports to Mexico and totaled € 42 million, their highest number ever.

Agricultural machinery

Agricultural machinery, the fourth most important export category, was the only category whose exports did not grow in 2022: its export value decreased by more than a third, from € 55 million to € 36 million in 2022. The top five is completed by miscellaneous chemical products, mostly fatty industrial alcohols: their export value has risen quickly over the last five years, from just over € 2 million in 2017 to € 34 million in 2022.

Beeld: ©LAN MEX

Drop in avocado exports

Mexican agri-food exports to The Netherlands, on the other hand, show a less rosy picture: Its total value has steadily decreased over the last three years: from € 356 million in 2019 to € 266 million in 2022. Avocados, which had in previous years become Mexico’s number one agri-food export product to The Netherlands, fell from € 59 million in 2021 to barely € 9 million in 2022. Experts point to the relatively low supply and the resulting higher prices of Mexican avocados, compared to other producing countries, in 2022, as the main reason for this significant drop in exports. With the sharp decline in Mexico’s fresh fruits exports, the exports of processed fruit now top the list of Mexico’s agri-food exports to The Netherlands, with a total value of € 65 million. Fruit juices, mainly from citrus fruits, make up two thirds of these processed fruit exports. Essential oils, mostly from citrus fruits, complete the top three of Mexico’s agri-food products exported to The Netherlands.


On the positive side, Mexico’s agri-food exports to The Netherlands are diversifying: Whereas in 2020 more than 60% of these exports consisted of fresh and processed fruits, in 2022 this number was only 36%. Other exports products such as tequila, asparagus, nuts, coffee and beer are gaining ground in The Netherlands, with tequila (€ 19 million, a 118% rise from 2021), nuts (€ 14,6 million, up 74%) and coffee and coffee extracts (€ 11 million, up 200%) showing the highest growth rates in 2022.

Beeld: ©LAN MEX