Lord Prices’ Market Report – May – Prices go nuts
The situation regarding pine nuts, pumpkins, brazils and almonds remains dire and prices continue to rise.
Bolivian brazil nut collectors take time out for photo opportunity
I was hoping for some good news as we enjoy a spring as late as it is bud-burstingly promising, followed seamlessly by a real barbecue summer…. the hosepipe ban is extended month upon month and butterflies float on billowing waves of acrid smoke from burnt yet still undercooked meat…………. However as I write this in the late depths of a soviet-style winter a somewhat depressing picture is emerging. Yes it’s virtually bad news all round at this sensitive time as the 2010 crop picture begins to crystallise.
We are apparently yet again in the grip of the disturbing weather patterns of El Nino, thus the poor coffee harvest in Columbia. Hasn’t this been superseded by global warming? It seems not where crop predictions are concerned. From the earthquake in Chile to the late frosts in Turkey the situation is not looking good.
One is naturally suspicious of rumours from growing areas where financial vested interest may guide the assessment of reality. Same rules obviously apply to stock markets and currency. Was that really a late frost in the growing areas of Turkey or has someone sprayed a tree with that fake Christmas snow you can buy in a can and posted a picture on the net? Sadly it is real and the apricot market has rocketed as have sultanas. In fact vine fruits are at a bit of a premium all round and look to remain so. The factories in Chile were largely unaffected by the earthquake but the infrastructure in terms of roads and bridges did not escape so lightly so getting the fruit to processing is proving very difficult with the inevitable consequence. The Californians are still arguing about export subsidies and are as a result still cautiously expensive.
The situation regarding pine nuts, pumpkins, brazils and almonds remains dire and prices continue to reflect that.
In the world of beans and pulses one of the fastest risers at present is the mighty mung bean which has gone up over 100% in six months with a poor crop and enhanced demand from India driving the meerkat northwards.
Continuing internal demand from China and poor exchange rates, notably a strong US dollar, affect butters, soyas etc. In fact virtually everything Chinese remains firm. We only have our southern European friends, the Greeks etc, to thank for the fact that sterling remains relatively stable against the euro or things would be a lot worse. And that in the current climate sadly counts as good news!