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US will run out of avocados in three weeks if Trump closes Mexico border

US will run out of avocados in three weeks if Trump closes Mexico borderPresident says there is a ‘good likelihood’ he will close border this week if Mexico does not stop immigrants from reaching USAvocados during harvest at an orchard in Mexico, where nearly half of all imported US vegetables and 40% of imported fruit are grown. Photograph: Ronaldo Schemidt/AFP/Getty ImagesUS consumers would run out of avocados in three weeks if Donald Trump makes good on his threat to close down the US–Mexico border.Trump said on Friday that there was a “very good likelihood” he would close the border this week if Mexico did not stop immigrants from reaching the United States.But a complete shutdown would disrupt millions of legal border crossings in addition to asylum seekers, as well as billions of dollars in trade, about $ 137bn of which is in food imports.From the avocados on avocado toast, to the limes and tequila in margaritas, the US is heavily reliant on Mexican imports of fruit, vegetables and alcohol to meet consumer demand.Nearly half of all imported US vegetables and 40% of imported fruit are grown in Mexico, according to the latest data from the United States Department of Agriculture.Avocados would run out in three weeks if imports from Mexico were stopped, said Steve Barnard, president and chief executive of Mission Produce, the largest distributor and grower of avocados in the world.“You couldn’t pick a worse time of year because Mexico supplies virtually 100% of the avocados in the US right now. California is just starting and they have a very small crop, but they’re not relevant right now and won’t be for another month or so,” said Barnard.Monica Ganley, principal at Quarterra, a consultancy specializing in Latin American agricultural issues and trade, said that a border closure would inevitably hit consumers.“We’re absolutely going to see higher prices. This is a very real and very relevant concern for American consumers.”The US and Mexico trade about $ 1.7bn in goods daily, according to the US Chamber of Commerce, which said closing the border would be “an unmitigated economic debacle” that would threaten 5m American jobs.The effects of a shutdown would run both ways.Mexico is the largest importer of US exports of refined fuels like diesel and gasoline, some of which moves by rail. It is unclear if rail terminals would be affected by closures.As changing palates have increased demand for fresh produce, and a greater variety of it, the United States has increasingly come to depend on Mexico to meet that need.Imports have nearly tripled since 1999. In that period, Mexico has gone from supplying less than a third of imported produce to 44% today.In addition to avocados, the majority of imported tomatoes, cucumbers, blackberries and raspberries come from Mexico. While there are other producers of these goods globally, opening those trade channels would take time, said Ganley.



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Argentina closes airspace to Boeing 737 MAX flights: state news agency

Argentina closes airspace to Boeing 737 MAX flights: state news agencyArgentina has temporarily closed its airspace to flights using Boeing 737 MAX aircraft, following similar measures taken by other countries in the region after two fatal crashes involving the plane, the state-run news agency said on Saturday. The decision comes after the crash as week ago of a Boeing 737 MAX operated by Ethiopian Airlines[ETHA.UL] that killed 157 people. The National Civil Aviation Administration (ANAC) did not immediately reply to a request for comment.



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Canada closes airspace to Boeing 737 MAX 8 planes; US last nation flying the jets

Canada closes airspace to Boeing 737 MAX 8 planes; US last nation flying the jetsThe U.S. was the last nation flying Boeing 737 Max 8 planes on Wednesday as nations around the globe grounded the jets.



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U.S. Closes Jerusalem Consulate and Downgrades Its Diplomatic Mission to Palestine

U.S. Closes Jerusalem Consulate and Downgrades Its Diplomatic Mission to PalestineThe United States has officially shuttered its consulate in Jerusalem, downgrading the status of its main diplomatic mission to the Palestinians by folding it into the U.S. Embassy to Israel.



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Venezuela: Violent clashes break out as nation closes border with three countries amid escalating crisis

Venezuela: Violent clashes break out as nation closes border with three countries amid escalating crisisVenezuelan soldiers fired tear gas at civilians near the country’s border with Colombia, amid growing tensions after a crowd tried to clear a barricade in an effort to access humanitarian aid, including food and medicine. Flames from the bus blaze caused nearby power lines to spark along the border. The fresh burst of violence came as Nicolas Maduro‘s government closed Venezuela’s border bridges with Colombia on Friday, having also closed the nation’s borders with Brazil and the island of Curacao, other crucial points of entry for international aid.



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Venezuela crisis: Maduro closes border with Brazil amid escalating tension with US over foreign aid

Venezuela crisis: Maduro closes border with Brazil amid escalating tension with US over foreign aidVenezuelan president Nicolas Maduro has closed the nation’s border with Brazil, amid an escalating standoff over allowing aid from the US to enter the country. In a televised address from the nation’s largest military base, Mr Maduro said he was also considering shuttering the border with neighbouring Colombia, two days before the opposition has vowed to move aid from the US and other nations inside Venezuela. “I don’t want to take any decision of this type but I am evaluating it, a total closure of the border with Colombia,” he said.



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Venezuela's Maduro closes Brazil border to block aid entry

Venezuela's Maduro closes Brazil border to block aid entryCARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro ordered the vast border with Brazil to be closed on Thursday, just days before opposition leaders plan to bring in foreign humanitarian aid he has refused to accept.



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Covington Catholic closes Tuesday, first school day after D.C. incident

Covington Catholic closes Tuesday, first school day after D.C. incidentThe Kentucky high school was closed because of security concerns after students were accused of mocking a Native American activist.



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The Latest: Truck crash closes highway lanes in Indiana

The Latest: Truck crash closes highway lanes in IndianaST. LOUIS (AP) — The Latest on a winter storm sweeping across parts of the Midwest this weekend (all times local):



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Dow closes 660 points lower after Apple cuts sales outlook, weak reading on U.S. manufacturing

Dow closes 660 points lower after Apple cuts sales outlook, weak reading on U.S. manufacturingThe Dow fell 660 points after Apple lowered its quarterly revenue outlook due to slowing iPhone sales in China, spooking stock market investors.



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