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31 October 2013 | Will Green
A fall in almond production in California has resulted in rocketing prices for the seed around the world, with a combination of factors to blame.
California produces 80 per cent of the world almond supply, but this year’s crop is forecast to be 2 per cent down year-on-year to around 800,000 tonnes. This has pushed up prices in other almond-producing countries, including Spain and Australia the next two largest producers, according to Mintec.
In Australia, prices are up 31 per cent year on year to AUS$6.60/kg (£3.90), while in Spain prices have hit â‚¬7.86/kg (£6.73), the highest level since 2005.
Two factors are blamed for the drop in Californian almond production. Mintec said pollination of crops in California - and as a result production - had been hit by drop in the bee population of up to 40 per cent. Meanwhile,
Australia-based Select Harvests, which manages orchards in the country, cited dry weather, saying in an announcement to the Australian Securities Exchange: “Almond pricing has significantly increased as continuing growth in global demand interacts with US supply constraints due to the ongoing drought conditions on California.”