Friday, November 4, 2016

Record prices for avocados spark strikes in Mexico and a crime wave in New Zealand

Maybe start calling the Kiwis the Avi's.
Or something.
From the Telegraph:
Championed by Nigella Lawson, beloved by healthy eaters and a staple on the Instragram accounts of foodies, the avocado has become so ubiquitous that some wags have christened it the over-cado.
With consumption growing in the UK by nearly a third every year, the avocado is now so popular that sales of the fruit overtook those of oranges last year. British shoppers spent a record £128million on avocados in the 12 months to March this year.

Pret A Manger, the high street chain, recently said that its customers ate more than 5m in 2015 alone, helping the company to double-digit sales growth. Across the Atlantic, Americans are also consuming vast quantities of the fruit, with 1.9billion pounds consumed last year - nearly double what was eaten a decade ago.

But they are not cheap - and are getting more expensive. In July, avocados surged to record high prices on the US commodity markets, reaching $63.75 (£51.05) per tray - which in the US holds 60 avocados - up 73pc from $36.75 during the same period last year.
According to the Haas Avocado Board, which presides over 95pc of the US market, the surge has pushed the price of an individual avocado up from $1.50 to almost $2.50.

While prices have often been known to fluctuate seasonally, this year’s spike is up 42pc on the previous high of $45 recorded in January 2014.

The reason for soaring prices can be traced to Mexico, the world’s largest producer and exporter of the fruit. Since import bans to the US were lifted in 2007, Mexican imports have grown to account for 49pc of all avocados consumed by Americans, injecting an estimated $1.09bn into the Mexican economy annually.

With the Californian growing season ending in October, US markets are reliant on Mexican imports to keep up with year-round demand. However, recent poor harvests and ongoing industrial action across the southern Mexican state of Michoacan, the country’s largest avocado-producing region, has led to a serious decline in exports....MORE