Are We Living Through the Great Avocado Shortage of 2016?

509484262

509484262

Photo by: Anaiz777 ©Anaiz777

Anaiz777, Anaiz777

Horrors! Is your avocado toast addiction in danger? Will you soon have to go cold turkey and suffer whatever effects of withdrawal come with it? The shakes? The cravings? The hunger screaming from deep in your soul?

Thanks to the effects of El Nino, which produced droughts that weakened trees and lowered fruit harvests in key areas, and a strike by Mexican avocado farmers seeking higher pay, the U.S. avocado supply is struggling to keep up with demand, which has climbed in recent years as Americans’ appetite for avocados has grown. (We used to consume about 1 pound per person here in the U.S.; now per capita consumption is closer to 5 pounds, Southern California public radio station KPCC reports.)

Calling it “the great avocado shortage,” the San Francisco Chronicle noted that while at this time last year about 45 million pounds of avocados per week were flowing into the United States from Mexico, this October that number was down to only about 8.5 million pounds a week, according to data from the Hass Avocado Board.

As a result, prices in some parts of the U.S. have skyrocketed, and some restaurants have stopped serving the delicious spreadable fruit, removing things like guacamole, avocado toast and avocado sandwich toppings from their menus. (One exception: Chipotle, although of course the chain’s customers are used to paying extra for guacamole.)

The good news is that, though it may take some time, the shortage is expected to ease, and we can all go back to scarfing down our avocado toast with impunity.

Addiction … back on.

Photo: iStock

Keep Reading

Next Up

Prepare for the Great Pumpkin Shortage of 2015

If you plan on making pumpkin pie this Thanksgiving, don’t wait till the last minute to buy the canned pumpkin — or you may find yourself facing an empty supermarket shelf.

How We All Ended Up Eating Hass Avocados

Here's how history led us to the Age of Avocado.

Everything We Couldn't Get Enough of at Chelsea Market Live

On the first night of the 2016 New York City Wine & Food Festival, it seemed only fitting to ring in the festivities just below Food Network’s home base at Chelsea Market, one of the premier indoor food halls in the world.

Heart-Healthy Living

Eight easy steps for better health

Pumpkin Shortage of 2011 Hits the Northeast

The northeast is experiencing a pumpkin shortage due to heavy rains and the destruction left in the wake of Hurricane Irene.