Yucatan News: Manzanero and Sandals
Armando Manzanero Honored in Washington, D.C.
Yucatan’s Armando Manzanero has been presented the “Cultural Heritage of the Americas Award", given by the Organization of American States (OAS). He was presented with his award by Luis Almagro, Secretary General of the OAS, to recognize the influence of his Latin American music throughout the entire span of his career. Armando Manzanero is a songwriter, musician, composer and music producer born and living in the Yucatan. Some of his songs have been sung by stars that include Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett and Andrea Bocelli. Mexico’s Ambassador to the OAS, Emilio Rabasa Gamboa, said that Mexico is proud of this recognition because of what Armando Manzanero has given to the country, to the hemisphere, and to the world. Armando Manzanero is truly one of the most important artistic treasures of Yucatan. Felicidades, Sr. Manzanero!
Cattle Exports Up 300% for Yucatan
Yucatan’s cattle producers are located mostly in the Tizimin area of Yucatan. This past year, their cattle earned the "USDA-approved" designation after meeting and exceeding the health standards of the United States. This means they can now export their zebu breeding stock and calves to the United States, as well as to Central and South America. With this, their exports rose 300% in one year alone! The ranchers are now making certain that their herds are managed so that they can maintain their own numbers and still supply beef for surrounding Mexican states in the face of this tremendous increase in exports. Yucatan’s cattle ranchers have worked long and hard to reach this point and we can all be proud of their accomplishments.
Alert: Risk of Credit Card Cloning
The National Commission for the Defense of Users of Financial Services (Condusef) has sent out an alert that there is currently a risk for credit card cloning in the area. The most common places where this activity is currently taking place includes bars, restaurants, and gas stations. The problem has been on the rise for at least three weeks. Most expats have found that it is better to use ATM machines inside of banks to get cash that is then used to make purchases. There is a fee for using your debit card, but the fee is much smaller than the mountain of withdrawals someone can make against your account if your card is cloned. Holiday shopping just gives these thieves more opportunity to take advantage of you, so using ATMS in banks is one way to at least deny them that. We haven’t heard of anyone who has experienced this, but would like to hear your outcome if it has happened to you.
Disabled and Successful Anyway
Moses Poot Tun and Monica Gutierrez began crafting their handmade shoes of sisal fiber about two years ago, after unsuccessfully looking for employment as a married and disabled couple. Their business, Nicte-Ha Sandals, currently sells shoes in Merida, throughout the state, and has even had orders from the United States, Canada, France, Holland and other European countries. They have now been names as one of ten finalists in Entrepreneur Challenge 2015. If they win, they will have enough new resources to speed up production and create more jobs. At the present time, they have six employees, three of whom are senior citizens. Their need for fabric also provides jobs for 20 women in another company, so it is very important that Nicte-Ha Sandals survives and thrives. According to Moses and Monica, success is available to everyone because, no matter how many things one can’t do, there is always something at which one excels. Discover that and put all of your effort into it and success will be yours. They believe that disability is a mental function, and not physical. In other words, if you believe it, you can achieve it. Congratulations to this talented couple who just also happens to be disabled. You can find them on Twitter at @nictehasandals.
6,000 Jobs Available in Q.R.
Not that we are suggesting that anyone leave Yucatan to find work, but we would be remiss if we did not report that the recent changes in state government, along with the construction and expansion of the Mayan Riviera corridor, has created a situation where, at the most recent State Job Fair in Quintana Roo, employers were offering 10,000 jobs to 4,000 applicants. There are even jobs available for those with disabilities, so there is plenty of work to go around in Quintana Roo. Hopefully, we will soon be able to publish the number of jobs available in Yucatan as well. There is one thing for certain about Yucatan and Quintana Roo, especially with the tourism push that is on right now and the new flights to/from Europe: any Yucateco who wants a job in Yucatan can have one. We have to add congratulations to the educational system that has produced workers who can rise to meet this challenge. We were also pleased to read that persons with disabilities have a free shuttle to get around and to work in Playa del Carmen.
Yucatan’s Economy Grows 5.11% in Second Quarter
At the National Cluster Meeting of the Automotive Industry, it was announced that the process of reindustrialization in Yucatan has directly contributed to an economic growth of 5.11% in the second quarter of 2015. This positions Yucatan as the state with the sixth largest growth in its economy for that period in Mexico, behind only such economic giants as Baja California, Guanajuato and Queretaro, all of which have a strong presence in aeronautics, automotive or electronic industries. Much of Yucatan’s success is due to improved rail and port services, as well as an educated workforce. In North America, Mexico’s automotive production capacity is now in second place in the world, and is in first place in Latin America. With 83% of Mexico’s automotive production exported, Yucatan’s rail and port services make it attractive as an international shipping port.
Yucatan Justice System Under Review
The international Open Society Justice Initiative organization is conducting a six month assessment of Yucatan’s new justice system, with particular emphasis on the protection of human rights and appropriate sentencing. The study began in September and preliminary results are in. Yucatan’s justice system is passing this review with flying colors and is considered to be a role model for justice systems throughout Mexico. This total revamping of a justice system is of extreme value for determining best practices that can be used around the world.
Plantains in the News
Sad to say that WebMD says that turkey does have tryptophan in it, but that alone won’t boost brain power or fight depression. It needs the addition of about 30 grams of carbohydrates that you have already eaten and stored in your body in order to produce the serotonin boost necessary to improve brain function and fight depression. Enter the plantain, a lovely old food that just so happens to have about 30 grams of carbohydrate, plus its own tryptophan, per plantain. You could get 30 grams of carbohydrates from a few Fig Newtons, or half of a small whole wheat bagel with honey drizzled over it, or just a few cups of air-popped popcorn, but why try to survive on those little dabs of food when you can have something that’s good and good for you, as well as something that has stood the test of more time than we can imagine? Plantains contain tryptophan, are antioxidants, are a great source of dietary fiber, and help to reduce blood glucose levels. That’s not too shabby a list of properties for a favorite snack or desert. So, add plaintain to your diet and eat your turkey. You’ll be glad you did.
Mexican Migration from the U.S. to Mexico
It often seems as if we cannot turn on American television without having our hearing assaulted by some presidential candidate who wants to deport every Mexican in the United States. Too late. They’ve been leaving for the past three years. Two years in a row, Mexican migration to the United States hovered at zero, with about as many returning as coming in. This past year, there was a net loss to the United States of 140,000 Mexicans who returned home for better jobs and to resume their lives with their families. To learn more about Mexican migrants (and all migrants) in the U.S., visit the Migration Policy Institute online. And read some statistics about the Mexican return here.
Yucatan Wins Three Tourism Awards
Yucatan was nominated in four tourism categories in the 2015 Food and Travel Reader Awards, and won three of them. Readers of the magazine Food and Travel Mexico determine the award winners by voting. The categories won by Yucatan were (1) Best Urban Hotel in the Interior of the Republic, won by Merida’s Rosas & Xocolate on Paseo de Montejo, (2) Best Ecological Hotel in Mexico, won by Xixim Ecoparaiso Celestun Hotel, and (3) Best Gourmet Destination, won by Merida. The awards were presented at a gala dinner in Mexico City and accepted by Yucatan Secretary of Tourism Promotion. Felicidades to all involved!!