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Thanks to America, We’ve Reached Peak Avocado

Stashed in: Awesome, California, Mexico, America!, Avocados!, National Geographic, Nuts!

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BUTTER FROM TREES. It is a troubled love, our love for guac, but a glorious one too.


Almonds have been the scapegoat for California’s water crisis, but avocados aren’t far behind. It takes 100 gallons to produce a pound of avocados (which usually amounts to about two of them). That translates to filling your bathtub with water for each avocado you eat. Serve a bowl of guac at your next party, and that’s more than people in water-inaccessible parts of Africa and Asia use in a week. Aquifers in Mexico and Chile are being drained faster than replenished, setting up a classic uphill battle, where mountain farmers are planting avocado groves at higher and higher altitudes to co-opt mountain runoff meant for urban growth and economic development in the cities below.

Meanwhile, in the countries that have historically grown the world’s avocados, the fruit is becoming a vehicle for crime. Mexico is by far the biggest producer, eclipsing second and third place Indonesia and the United States five-fold. Almost three quarters of Mexico’s crop comes from the state of Michoacán, where avocados have replaced hard drugs like cocaine and heroin as the currency of the dominant Caballeros Templarios cartel. To its members, avocados have become known as oro verde, or green gold, which they extort from farmers in exchange for security.

And it’s not just avocados, but limes, too. As a result of cartel activity, a temporary lime shortage and price crisis left a sour taste on last year’s Cinco de Mayo celebrations.

Without Mexican avocados, ones produced in the U.S., which are chiefly grown in just California and Florida, would fill only a third of America’s insatiable appetite for the fruit. But even that supply is far from stable. In California, dry taps are pushing farmers away from water-heavy crops like almonds, chickpeas, and avocados, in favor of low intensity (but still sufficiently lucrative) ones like grapes and tomatoes.

It's going to be difficult to not think of avocados as a bathtub of water.

Avocados replacing cocaine and heroin as currency for Mexican cartels?

Not even sure what to think about that. 

Finally, something depreciating faster than fiat currency!

Yes, that's the problem with putting money into produce. Produce spoils!

One of my favorite Twitter accounts is called @RealAvocadoFacts, and today they dropped this gem on us: "if your body is doing allergies remember it's to protect you from an invasion by plants because they are powerful not oligarch powerful but unless it's a shrimp allergy but then think how powerful you are because most of plants don't even think to defend against shrimp".

So not only do avocados give to us of their delicious buttery flesh, but they also dispense WISDOM BOMBS as big and shiny as their seeds!

Avocados are wisdom bombs and butter grenades! 

That is a wise avocado.

I'm not liking this smear campaign that associates avocados with wasting water and Mexican cartels.

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