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Continuing drought in Brazil has decimated coffee plants, reduced the production of Arabica beans by 18% and driven up the price of commodity futures by 8.3%, so far. The operative phrase is ‘so far’ because price increases have not yet matched the decline in production.
After work today, I bought two tins of my favorite Safeway house brand; Edwards fine grind, to throw in the freezer for long term storage. The good news is the store price hasn’t changed since the last tin I bought in December. The bad news is the price will probably go much higher so if you need your caffeine and brew your own you better buy now while the price is still relatively cheap.
Wait, it gets worse (as if you weren’t expecting this).The El Niño weather phenomena is expected to rear its ugly head possibly as early as July. This increases the likelihood of floods in South America so the beleaguered coffee plants may go from one extreme to another; from drought to washed-away. There may be no quick end to the crash in coffee bean production which means high prices may be with us for a long time. Besides, how often do prices of essentials come down?
There may not be much you can do to avoid the price increase at your favorite take-out or drive-thru except buy beans now, freeze ‘em in and brew more of your own.
Words to the wise. Govern yourself accordingly.
April 23, 2014
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