At least four food and beverage companies are considering halting deliveries to the Red Triangle region of Puebla because of insecurity, according to the regional president of the Business Coordinating Council (CCE), Carlos Montiel Solana.
Montiel said that a wave of truck robberies in the region is scaring off the companies, whose drivers often refuse to work after 4:00pm because of the danger of being robbed. Five trucks have been robbed so far this week in the region, which has long been known as a hotspot for fuel theft.
The four companies, which Montiel did not name, will end deliveries to the Red Triangle if the situation does not improve over the next month. He added that the presence of federal security forces has not improved security in the region, and that there has been little cooperation from local governments in the five municipalities of the Red Triangle: Tepeaca, Acatzingo, Quecholac, Tecamachalco and Palmar de Bravo.
Montiel said that since the federal government cracked down on fuel theft, criminal groups in the Red Triangle have been diversifying, turning to new criminal activities such as stealing cargo from trucks.
“[Fuel theft] hasn’t increased, but it hasn’t gone down either,” he said. “But the criminals are moving into cargo robbery, and that’s what’s hurting us a lot.”
Although only four companies are actively considering halting operations, continuing insecurity could cause economic problems for the whole state, Montiel said.
Pepsi, Bimbo and Grupo Modelo halted deliveries in the Red Triangle last fall for the same reason.