Armed highway thieves steal 40 tonnes of avocados in Mexico

25 May 2024, 08:42 | Updated: 25 May 2024, 10:12

Highway thieves have stolen 40 tonnes of avocados in Mexico, prosecutors have said.

Armed men stopped freight trucks in two separate robberies in the western state of Michoacan, Mexico’s main producer of avocados, the attorney general's office said.

Approximately 20 tonnes of avocados were taken in both cases, with the robbers transferring crates containing the fruit into a van and fleeing the scene.

Avocado farmers have long been targeted by drug cartel extortion demands in Michoacan, and thefts of fruit straight from trees in avocado orchards are known to happen.

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However, hijackings of entire shipments are rare.

Mexico is the world's largest producer of the fruit and is responsible for 45% of the international avocado market.