The swine flu that has gripped Mexico has had an immediate impact on the retail industry in the country, particularly the food sector. The flu, which has caused the deaths of up to 149 people already, has seen restaurants and food outlets being shut, with supermarkets remaining empty.
Starbucks yesterday announced that it has shut 10 of its stores in the city, and also noted that one of its employees was being treated for flu symptoms. The major grocery chains were reporting sharp drops in footfalls, as people stayed home. This caused shares of major chains to drop yesterday, with Walmex losing about 7% of its share price.
The impact was felt across the border as well, as shares of major US meat producers falling sharply, as Mexico is major importer of meat. The country imported around 6% of the total meat produced by Tyson Foods, the largest US meat producer.