Water or Beer? The People of Mexicali vs. Constellation Brands

Discussion in 'Beer News & Releases' started by Todd, Aug 1, 2019.

  1. Todd

    Todd Founder (5,646) Aug 23, 1996 California
    Staff Moderator Fest Crew

    According to reports, Constellation Brands did a backdoor deal with local government officials in Mexicali that threatens an already strained water supply and the people who rely on it to survive.
    https://dialogochino.net/26683-water-or-beer/

    Related: As Big Beer Moves In, Activists in Mexicali Fight To Keep Their Water (NPR, March 2018)

    This is only one example of shady water privatization deals that are happening around the globe. Unfortunately these stories will go practically unheard until the impact focuses on people of privilege, and when it does it'll probably be too late to do anything about it.
     
  2. rodbeermunch

    rodbeermunch Poo-Bah (4,723) Sep 30, 2015 Nevada
    Trader

    Water is an under valued commodity. Like all resources, it will be first prioritized for those who are willing to pay for it in the future.

    Supply/demand.
     
  3. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (4,096) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
    Society

  4. rgordon

    rgordon Savant (959) Apr 26, 2012 North Carolina

    This reminds me of the film Chinatown. Entire communities and farms disappeared. It is an issue that will continue to persist and likely worsen.
     
  5. MNAle

    MNAle Poo-Bah (1,511) Sep 6, 2011 Minnesota
    Society

    Why would a multinational beverage company build a large brewery in "an arid region"? What is the business case for that?
     
  6. AZBeerDude72

    AZBeerDude72 Poo-Bah (1,745) Jun 10, 2016 Arizona
    Society Trader

    I am sure it had everything to do with cost/profit for them. I am curious why the powers that be who inked the deal did not raise this question before they granted the company rights to build? Did no one ask about the water issue or did they just not care? I am sure a lot of money was made for all parties involved in the deal so the little stuff like raping the local water supply did not come up.
    Cheers
     
    VoxRationis likes this.
  7. MNAle

    MNAle Poo-Bah (1,511) Sep 6, 2011 Minnesota
    Society

    Large projects like this by large corporations always have a cost - profit analysis, which must be positive (each company may have its own threshold of return on investment, but they do have one).

    I don't understand the business case for building a large production brewery in an area with a limited water supply, even with "rights" granted by the government. Those rights don't make the limited unlimited; they just allocate the limited water. It is still limited.
     
  8. BrewmanCapote

    BrewmanCapote Aspirant (252) Feb 3, 2013 Illinois

    Most likely cheap labor and cheap land.
     
  9. MNAle

    MNAle Poo-Bah (1,511) Sep 6, 2011 Minnesota
    Society

    Wouldn't that cover much of Mexico?
     
    rgordon and VoxRationis like this.
  10. Scrapss

    Scrapss Champion (875) Nov 15, 2008 Pennsylvania
    Society

    Are they paying more than 3 cents per gallon? Does anyone know the exact amounts? Does any premium they might pay go into alternative water harvesting initiatives or recapture initiatives?
     
  11. elNopalero

    elNopalero Poo-Bah (3,358) Oct 14, 2009 Texas
    Society Trader

    As a friendly reminder, they own Ballast Point, among other brands. If the notion of corporate responsibility matters to you then it's worth noting the extent of their reach here in the states and elsewhere.

    (per Wiki: Wine brands include Robert Mondavi, Ravenswood Winery, Wild Horse Winery, Clos du Bois, Franciscan Estates, Kim Crawford, Meiomi, Mark West, Ruffino, and The Prisoner. Constellation's beer portfolio includes imported brands such as Corona, Modelo Especial, Negra Modelo, and Pacífico, as well as Ballast Point and Funky Buddha. Spirits brands include Black Velvet Canadian Whisky, Svedka Vodka, Casa Noble Tequila and High West Whiskey.)
     
    beertunes likes this.
  12. beertunes

    beertunes Poo-Bah (6,084) Sep 24, 2007 Northern Mariana Islands
    Trader

    Are you serious?

    If so, fuck off.

    If only semi-serious, do you actually value profits over people? (Hello Flint/Michigan and their horric deal with Nestle).

    If trolling, you suck at it.

    If you actually live in Nevada, and your water supply comes from anywhere other than groundwater, are you happy about the folks downstream getting hosed for your pleasure?

    Do you also support a corporations right to privatize air? You are are willing to pay to breathe, right?
     
  13. rodbeermunch

    rodbeermunch Poo-Bah (4,723) Sep 30, 2015 Nevada
    Trader

    Sorry you have feelings about economic realities.
     
    SuperWhip and eldoctorador like this.
  14. stevepat

    stevepat Defender (693) Mar 12, 2013 California
    Trader

    economic realities are cultural constructs. The economy is a social invention that we build within the confines of our values and the environment. Insisting that there are concrete and finite 'economic realities' (which always seem to screw the individual in favor of corporate power) is a propaganda tool of those seeking control of our collective resource wealth
     
  15. BrewmanCapote

    BrewmanCapote Aspirant (252) Feb 3, 2013 Illinois

    Good point
     
  16. rgordon

    rgordon Savant (959) Apr 26, 2012 North Carolina

    I think the issue is water piracy, not economic realities. Like @MNAle says, it seems odd building a water gulping industry in an arid region.
     
    MNAle and beertunes like this.
  17. AZBeerDude72

    AZBeerDude72 Poo-Bah (1,745) Jun 10, 2016 Arizona
    Society Trader

    My assumption is that both parties are guilty, the people who sold them the land obviously put proift/greed before the local areas concerns. So we cannot point a finger just at the company we should be pointing it at both the local leaders of that town and the company. It takes two to tango does it not.
    Cheers
     
  18. brandnewcardock

    brandnewcardock Initiate (75) Aug 23, 2017 New York
    Trader

    Why do I have a feeling that if this was happening in your town (or a place that looked like your town) rather than places like Mexico or Flint, your tune would be a lot different? I wonder what the difference could be...
     
    beertunes and thesherrybomber like this.
  19. rodbeermunch

    rodbeermunch Poo-Bah (4,723) Sep 30, 2015 Nevada
    Trader

    Translation: Philosophy/Sociology 101 > Business/History 101

    This is and has been happening everywhere (including my town) since the dawn of civilization. People compete for resources, which are finite.
     
    Spaten454 and AZBeerDude72 like this.
  20. brandnewcardock

    brandnewcardock Initiate (75) Aug 23, 2017 New York
    Trader

    Very interesting. Would you be able to provide a source for which town in Nevada is struggling from water scarcity issues, while the government is selling/giving that water away to private businesses with shady and possibly illegal deals?
     
    beertunes and thesherrybomber like this.
  21. stevepat

    stevepat Defender (693) Mar 12, 2013 California
    Trader

    Bad translation but you have made your opinion on the matter clear. Enjoy your day
     
    meefmoff and beertunes like this.
  22. rgordon

    rgordon Savant (959) Apr 26, 2012 North Carolina

    The initial plan WAS cooked up and that is the problem. Bad governance with corporate collusion can be a bad business. The wrong people pay...
     
    beertunes and AZBeerDude72 like this.
  23. AZBeerDude72

    AZBeerDude72 Poo-Bah (1,745) Jun 10, 2016 Arizona
    Society Trader

    Agree
     
  24. brandnewcardock

    brandnewcardock Initiate (75) Aug 23, 2017 New York
    Trader

    "If those dumb poor people want water so much, why don't they just use their endless supply of corporate resources to bribe their government into giving it to them like the amazing and wonderful Constellation Brands Inc? Otherwise they should just stop complaining (or find another way to survive without something that humans literally need to live) because that's just the way life is!"
     
  25. FatBoyGotSwagger

    FatBoyGotSwagger Meyvn (1,328) Apr 4, 2009 Pennsylvania

    You could use Las Vegas as an example. They use a water source not local to the region for the city and for things as frivolous as maintaining golf courses.

    I believe in California there are areas where people are buying land to tap into the dwindling water table in certain regions.
     
    Shanex and rodbeermunch like this.
  26. brandnewcardock

    brandnewcardock Initiate (75) Aug 23, 2017 New York
    Trader

    I mean, you literally can't use Las Vegas as a example, because while it's not a local water source and they use that water for non-essential things, it's not at the expense of keeping the population of the city alive.
     
  27. FatBoyGotSwagger

    FatBoyGotSwagger Meyvn (1,328) Apr 4, 2009 Pennsylvania

    You can tell that to the people downriver from Las Vegas' source. They might feel differently.

    The areas I mentioned being exploited in California have the local residents waiting on water delivery trucks to fill their tanks because they can't reach the lowering water table. Water they use for drinking, showering and doing dishes.
     
  28. brandnewcardock

    brandnewcardock Initiate (75) Aug 23, 2017 New York
    Trader

    What are the demographics of these areas?
     
  29. FatBoyGotSwagger

    FatBoyGotSwagger Meyvn (1,328) Apr 4, 2009 Pennsylvania

    Low income, rural.
     
  30. AZBeerDude72

    AZBeerDude72 Poo-Bah (1,745) Jun 10, 2016 Arizona
    Society Trader

    What is sad is that the govt used to or still does not allow Rain Harvesting. I was watching a show on some local AZ residents who harvest the rain for All their water and at a time it was illegal. How funny is that, its rain and a lot evaporates and the rest is either down a drain etc and the govt wants to criminalize people for using the rain verse local water, they are in effect lowering the demand and helping but hell the govt does not collect their tax money.
    Think of how much water the brewery could get from onsite rain harvesting, it could offset a load of the water used but nope, cannot get taxes from the air.
     
    JackHorzempa and stevepat like this.
  31. brandnewcardock

    brandnewcardock Initiate (75) Aug 23, 2017 New York
    Trader

    Yeah, that's kind of my entire point here. I definitely admit it was overzealous to imply that there are no such water issues in places like Nevada or California today, nor did I know about the Las Vegas issues.

    But my point was really in response @rodbeermunch claim that this kind of exploitation has indeed happened to him personally as a way to further his shitty views on the issue. I find it super hard to believe that someone posting on a craft beer forum, one of the most expensive hobbies around, has personally suffered from water exploitation at the hands of local governments and corporations.

    His "oh well, it happens!" views on the issue is also made worse by the fact that these issues only really happen in low income minority areas. Nothing is worse than people who lick the boots of corporations who exploit the most vulnerable in our society.
     
    Snowcrash000 and beertunes like this.
  32. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (4,096) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
    Society

    “In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem.”

    - Ronald Reagan
     
  33. AZBeerDude72

    AZBeerDude72 Poo-Bah (1,745) Jun 10, 2016 Arizona
    Society Trader

    I could not agree more, if we just got rid of the dopes running the country and let the people do whats right it probably would be a great world indeed, but sadly that will never happen.:stuck_out_tongue:
     
    JackHorzempa likes this.
  34. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (4,096) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
    Society

    LOL!:grin:

    'We' have an opportunity to do this every 2/4 years but 'we' keep sending those same dopes back into the swamp of Washington D.C.

    As one pundit characterizes it: people think that everyone in Congress is a 'dope' except for their congressperson.

    Cheers!
     
    Spikester, sharpski and AZBeerDude72 like this.
  35. rodbeermunch

    rodbeermunch Poo-Bah (4,723) Sep 30, 2015 Nevada
    Trader

    Side note: Beer is a relatively inexpensive hobby, even in the genre of "alcohol" alone (i.e. see wine, bourbon, etc. . . go for much, much higher cost). Even my lambic addiction pales in comparison to skiing, golf and softball (not to mention what a new truck costs).

    I didn't think it was my viewpoint that humans compete for resources. Seems to be kind of a fundamental truth through all of human history as opposed to an opinion.

    In terms of personal issues, yes, it affects me, and everyone (my point). Me, moreso than your average person, whether it be through available water for growing hops, riparian law/water board, or just as a simple homeowner who uses water (supply/demand influence on price).

    Anyways, yeah, uh, water issues are huge out where I live. Is it the exact same scenario as in Mexico? Obviously not. Is it a competition for resources like I said? Most definitely.

    https://elkodaily.com/news/local/ru...cle_18029ada-be2d-5d0b-9fd8-627ab8b2eb64.html

    https://www.kolotv.com/content/news...-ranchers-enjoy-a-rare-problem-417247513.html

    [​IMG]
     
  36. hopfenunmaltz

    hopfenunmaltz Meyvn (1,451) Jun 8, 2005 Michigan

    The water laws in the West are different. The Colorado River is over allocated. Some states will soon have to conserve as they will bump up to their allocation.

    Nevada gets a paltry 300k acre feet. By treaty Mexico gets 1.5 million acre feet.

    The Colorado River Compact was drawn up by the seven Western States in the Colorado Basin. The Feds weren't involved. Well, except for the dams and reservoirs that impound and distribute the water, those are Bureau of Reclamation.

    In the West water doesn't flow downhill, it flows to money.

    A link if you wish to read about it.
    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colorado_River_Compact
     
  37. stevepat

    stevepat Defender (693) Mar 12, 2013 California
    Trader

    @rodbeermunch ,would it be fair to say your view is "people fight over resources and whoever wins, and however those resources get divided, is the correct and fair way to allocate them " ?
     
  38. brandnewcardock

    brandnewcardock Initiate (75) Aug 23, 2017 New York
    Trader

    Shocked to see you spewing moronic, right wing propaganda talking points. Collecting rain water is illegal (in some places) because rain is a major source of water. If someone (personal or corporation) is collecting that water, they're quite literally taking it away from the source. Do you think when it rains that water just disappears forever? Should the government not protect people in certain areas from other exploiting resources for their own personal gain?

    Obviously it's easier to not look into why things are illegal and just shout "GOVERNMENT BAD!!!" online.
     
    SuperWhip and beertunes like this.
  39. hopfenunmaltz

    hopfenunmaltz Meyvn (1,451) Jun 8, 2005 Michigan

    In the West it is the first users that own the water. That rain falling on your property belongs to the Rancher downstream, who's ancestor homesteaded the land. They get their allocation first, then the next user, and so on.
     
  40. beertunes

    beertunes Poo-Bah (6,084) Sep 24, 2007 Northern Mariana Islands
    Trader

    Consider the source of that quote.
     
    grilledsquid and stevepat like this.