Tag Archive: Drought

The World’s Biggest Chocolate-Maker Says We’re Running Out Of Chocolate






” There’s no easy way to say this: You’re eating too much chocolate, all of you. And it’s getting so out of hand that the world could be headed towards a potentially disastrous (if you love chocolate) scenario if it doesn’t stop.

  Those are, roughly speaking, the words of two huge chocolate makers, Mars, Inc. and Barry Callebaut. And there’s some data to back them up.

  Chocolate deficits, whereby farmers produce less cocoa than the world eats, are becoming the norm. Already, we are in the midst of what could be the longest streak of consecutive chocolate deficits in more than 50 years. It also looks like deficits aren’t just carrying over from year-to-year—the industry expects them to grow. Last year, the world ate roughly 70,000 metric tons more cocoa than it produced. By 2020, the two chocolate-makers warn that that number could swell to 1 million metric tons, a more than 14-fold increase; by 2030, they think the deficit could reach 2 million metric tons.

  The problem is, for one, a supply issue. Dry weather in West Africa (specifically in the Ivory Coast and Ghana, where more than 70 percent of the world’s cocoa is produced) has greatly decreased production in the region. A nasty fungal disease known as frosty pod hasn’t helped either. The International Cocoa Organization estimates it has wiped out between 30 percent and 40 percent of global cocoa production. Because of all this, cocoa farming has proven a particularly tough business, and many farmers have shifted to more profitable crops, like corn, as a result.

  Then there’s the world’s insatiable appetite for chocolate. China’s growing love for the stuff is of particular concern. The Chinese are buying more and more chocolate each year. Still, they only consume per capita about 5 percent of what the average Western European eats. There’s also the rising popularity of dark chocolate, which contains a good deal more cocoa by volume than traditional chocolate bars (the average chocolate bar contains about 10 percent, while dark chocolate often contains upwards of 70 percent). “



    The accompanying video is from a year ago but is very well put together an offers a host of facts regarding what it takes to keep the chocolate jones off our backs .

    If you have ever wondered about the flora that provides your Hersey bar consider these basic facts about theobroma cacao , the tree from which the goodness that is chocolate derives; the tree requires 5 to 6 years to reach yield-bearing maturity , only produces cacao in useful quantities for about twenty-five years and tif that wasn’t limiting enough , each tree only produces enough beans to produce two pounds of chocolate annually .

  The single biggest biggest factor , contrary to what the warmists might have your believe , is growing affluence and hence demand for what has routinely been pretty much a niche market for the end product . Whether we westerners can believe it or not , chocolate is a luxury to 99% of the world .

    As the economies of China , India and other previously considered third-world countries continue to grow and increase the world’s supply of middle/upper income earners so rises the demand for luxury goods including that nectar of the God’s … Chocolate . Are you ready for the $10 Hersey bar ?

Washington Post has more











Pricey Beef Puts Heat On U.S. Grilling Season





” As Americans prepare for Memorial Day—the official kickoff to a summer grilling season of burgers and T-bones—rising beef prices have some consumers balking in the grocery aisles.

Retail beef prices are widely expected to set new records in coming weeks after wholesale prices, or the amount meatpackers charge sellers for beef, hit an all-time peak this past week.

After achieving new highs for three weeks, choice-grade beef, the most common variety in the U.S., jumped to $2.1137 a pound Thursday, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. That level broke a decade-old record for wholesale prices set in 2003, when a case of mad-cow disease in Canada led to a spike in export demand for U.S. beef.”








 …thanks to ethanol

 “This summer has not done any favors for world food production, due to a global drought and crop destroying heatwaves.  Especially, the production of corn has been affected from the lack of rainfall in the US midwest.  A recent report from the BBC lays out the details:”


  “Obama could solve this problem instantly by suspending the federal ethanol mandate — something his EPA actually can do unilaterally and legally. Instead, Obama will buy up meat — a move that meat producers say won’t help them much anyway. “It doesn’t solve the problem of having enough affordable corn next summer,” industry analyst Steve Meyer told Reuters. “Without changing the ethanol program, nothing can be done,” he said.””