On Monday 26th February almost all national newspapers and the BBC ran stories regarding the shortage of Raisins & Currants creating an immediate shortage of Hot Cross Buns. Whilst it’s true that California has suffered a huge decrease in the overall size and quality of 2017 Raisin crop when compared to 2016 it seems to have slipped the media’s attention that almost no manufacturer uses Californian Raisins in their Hot Cross Bun production because Turkey has historically been cheaper and more readily available.
Many of the reports did state that the price of Turkish fruit has increased by 20% since September and whilst this is correct the prices are still towards the bottom end of a 6 year low (although not as cheap as last year), something none of the media outlets decided to highlight.
What they’ve also clearly neglected to mention in terms of the scaremongering when the reports moved onto Christmas Puddings & Mince Pies is that as part of the service the likes of Chelmer Foods & our competition offer is the fact that we will have sold right through until December 2018 to major manufacturers and therefore not only is the supply guaranteed but so is the price. Most Christmas puddings are made in the earlier part of the year, soaked and left to mature accordingly.
Now the one thing they did get right in their reports was the dire situation with Greek Currants, how this pricing has sky rocketed compared to last year and how manufacturers would have to look at alternative sources of supply such as South Africa & Australia. What they yet again failed to report is that a large proportion of manufacturers covered huge quantities of material at the start of the season when pricing was substantially lower than it is currently (yes pun intended) and therefore have adequate cover to see them through until 2018 crop/harvest in August/September when there is hope that they’ll be some easing on prices.
Ultimately the theme of the above is don’t believe everything you see in the media.