"Our strategic plan is to increase the company’s market presence to 10%. The mechanism required includes portfolio development, extending closer support to clients and assisting producers in technical matters."
Can you introduce Agricultura Nacional and describe the company’s presence in Mexico today?
Agricultura Nacional is a 100% Mexican family company with over 85 years of history, which is part of Grupo Dragón. Our purpose is to contribute to better nutrition in Mexico and we have a large team of professionals, agro specialists and chemical engineers working to achieve this goal. We also have two plants, in Puebla and Lerma, with capacities above 50 million liters. The organization employs over 900 people, commercializes over 100 brands and has filed over 200 product health records.
Can you explain the company’s range of agrochemical products for different markets?
We understand the needs of the Mexican agricultural industry and offer solutions for crop protection, such as fungicides, insecticides, and products for plant physiology. In recent years, in accordance with developments within Mexican agriculture, we launched our biologically-made repellent, Bio-Dragón. Our commitment to partners is providing the best and most optimized solutions for processes. For this reason, the company is focused on laboratory research and constantly searching for improvements and opportunities.
Dragón follows a set of principles in our product design processes. In the first place, we look to reduce the product’s chemical demand and maximize the advantages it offers the crop producer. This means reducing environmental impact and improving control. Our product development is guided by the search for efficiency and is based on the challenges faced by our partners.
Can you explain the process of product formulation through to distribution and commercialization?
The vertical process of product examination is long. It takes between five and seven years and ensures that the Mexican agricultural industry has an offer of products characterized by excellence. Examination includes identifying the challenge and evaluating the benefits and drawbacks of ingredients. There is a back and forth dynamic that tests efficiency; our scientists conduct experiments across a variety of climates, crops and conditions to ensure that product efficacy is validated.
Dragón won the Premio Nacional Agroalimentario 2020. What was this for, and what is its significance?
Due to being a family business, Dragón has a strong value system. We support this base with an institutional development that allows for a better monitoring of goals. As part of a process of institutionalization, we began participating in programs such as ISO 9001 and 18001, and certifications such as the Premio Nacional Agroalimentario 2020. This contest focuses specifically in our segment and is directed by the CAN (Consejo Nacional Agropecuario). Our candidacy required an auditing of the company and we were awarded a distinction for corporate excellence across benchmarks.
Agriculture is one of the few industries that grew during the pandemic. How did Covid impact your business?
Agriculture was labeled an essential industry, which was a blessing. In comparison to other businesses, Dragon performed well. Far from having to reduce our workforce, we expanded hiring and contributed to the welfare of communities. We also had projects of food assistance and welfare; they stem from the company’s commitment to social and environmental matters.
What are Agricultura Nacional’s objectives for the next two years?
Our strategic plan is to increase the company’s market presence to 10%. The mechanism required includes portfolio development, extending closer support to clients and assisting producers in technical matters. In order for this to be successful, the human capital of our collaborators has to be excellent. For this reason, human resources are an important focus in 2021.
Do you have a final message for the audience of Chemical Week about the potential of the Mexican agriculture market?
Mexico has proven its potential for food production. Dragon is very honored to belong to this production chain and to contribute to the nourishment of people in Mexico and abroad. We will continue demonstrating what we have to offer and thank Chemical Week for highlighting our company and Mexico’s potential.