Aw Nuts! Peanut Prices Headed Up Because Of Drought
The drought in the south will soon have impact on our pocketbooks here in the Northland. It appears it’s not just peanuts but related products such as peanut butter that will cost more this fall.
This year’s peanut crop is projected to drop 13 percent from last year, according to the United States Department of Agriculture.
That will translate into pricier peanuts. Makers of JIF peanut butter, for example, have already announced a 30 percent price hike is on its way.
Chad Godsey, cropping systems specialist and assistant professor with Oklahoma State University’s plant and soil sciences department, said that the heat this summer has made it hard for planters and producers to get enough water on their peanuts.
“There’s not many plants that can survive when you have so many days over 100 degrees Fahrenheit,” he said. “Basically the heat sterilizes the pollen.”
With peanut demand high but supply low, companies purchasing the crops from farmers could pay a higher price. Companies might pass off the higher cost of business to consumers, according to Mike Siemienas, a spokesman for grocery retailer Supervalu, which owns Jewel-Osco and Save-a-Lot stores, among others.
“Consumers will likely see price increases for peanut products across the industry,” Siemienas said.
Major peanut player J.M. Smuckers announced recently that its 30 percent price hike for JIF will start in November.