Why Are Avocados So Expensive Right Now?
If you've been in your grocer's produce aisle lately and noticed the price of avocados getting higher and higher, you're not going crazy. The price of avocados is unseasonably high - let's dive deeper into what's going on in the world of avocados this year!
Did you know the entire growth process of an avocado - from flower initiation to harvest - takes two full years? That means the weather from two years ago is directly impacting the avocados that are being harvested right now in California. Do you remember what the weather was like in California in early 2015? Hint: very dry! We were still in an extreme, sometimes 'exceptional', drought throughout the majority of the state. Remember that California's drought started in 2012, so by 2015 the entire state was extremely dry.
Because of the weather and drought conditions in 2015, we're now seeing the impact that has on our California avocado supply. Last year, California produced over 400 million pounds of avocados. This year, California is expected to harvest about half of that amount - 225 million pounds. Because of this tighter availability and continued high demand, we're seeing prices rise. And although rain has been a welcome relief to California’s drought, the unusual amount of rain California has received over the 2016-2017 winter has had its own issues: growers can’t pick the crop when their fields and orchards are soaked! With the rain finally slowing down, we expect the rising prices to begin to level out, although they will stay high throughout the season because of the market’s low supply.
What does all of this mean for you and me? With the supply of California avocados predicted to be almost half of what it was last year, let's take a moment to appreciate every avocado we eat this season! And here's some good news: all of the rain California is getting this year could mean that in the future we will have a larger supply of California avocados, so don't worry - the avocado shortage won't be forever! Yay!
Express your love for the avocado on our Facebook page! We're talking avocados in the month of March so jump in and join the conversation!