Anyone who still thinks record-breaking drought patterns in the South don’t matter because Al Gore is fat, red state immigration laws chasing off migrant farm workers is only a good thing, and rampant food commodity speculation by the financial sector is a way to boost the economy, and that a few giant food conglomerates controlling all the market for the stuff you eat is a super capitalistic idea, meet the confluence of all four of these lovely occurrences in your supermarket aisle as you’re about to see the price of peanut butter go through the freakin’ roof.
Kraft will raise prices for its Planters brand peanut butter by 40% starting Monday, while ConAgra has instituted increases of more than 20% for its Peter Pan brand that went into effect this month.
J.M. Smucker , which makes Jif, will introduce price hikes of around 30% starting Tuesday.
Consumers, meanwhile, are already seeing these increases reflected at grocery stores.
Maria Brous, a spokeswoman for the Publix chain, said the store had already made slight increases in retail prices and expects them to go higher “as the cost of goods continue[s] to rise”.
Dick Roberts, a spokesman for Giant Eagle grocery stores, said that “like all retailers,” the store is “being affected by industry factors on peanut butter pricing”. Chris Brand, a spokesman for Giant food stores, said the “outlook does not look good until next year’s crop is harvested and produced”.
Yes folks, we’ve finally gotten to the point where the Invisible Hand just Rochambeau’d you for your frackin’ peanut butter. Is there anything that the conservative “greed is good”, “deregulation at all costs” policies of the last decade or so can’t destroy and doesn’t result in the average American having to pay the check?
Peanut butter jelly with a baseball bat, indeed.
Silly, it’s because of Obama’s regulations at the EPA this is happening.
Almond butter for the win! Much better in terms of good fat/bad fat ratio. Already pre-expensive, though.
I’m allergic to peanut butter. I should care WHY?
/typical wingnut response
(Although I really do have a violent aversion to all peanut products )
I think I got rock. Ouch.
And these are the same “progressives” that want big-ass taxes on “junk” food anyway, complaining about the cost of peanut butter?
Also, drought in the south and Warmism? Remember, folks: weather isn’t climate, except when it is.
rochambeau as a verb:
Well, I learned something today.
It looks like tomatoes will get expensive, too if Alabama can’t pick and ship their crop.
A lot of these companies are just going to price themselves out of existence. $5.00 has become the new dollar bill. $6.00 for a loaf of bread is just plain outrageous. Where does it go from here?
Have you noticed how fast gas has dropped now that Libya will be coming back online?
Oh, hold on.
When you have drought in wheat-growing country . . . . .
Washington state apple growers have a crisis finding pickers this year, and the state doesn’t have any newly minted herp-derp laws on the books regarding migrant workers.
They simply aren’t paying enough for the labor.
No wonder FreshCo doesn’t have my natural peanut butter on deep sale any more. Maybe I can still score something at Food Basics …
Villago Delenda Est
Adam Smith would not approve of combines of merchants gouging the public through cartel operations.
But you wouldn’t know that, because you’ve never read Adam Smith.
This is kind of weird and kind of scary, but I really am old enough that I remember when $2.50 was lunch money.
For the entire week.
Seriously, a sandwich and coffee for 45 cents, a generous nickel tip, and before you know it you’ve burned two and a half bucks.
I spend double that in Starbucks many days and don’t blink. Wow.
The sharpers who brought you fancy financial instruments based on mortgages and blew up the housing market have turned their attention to used car loans. They’re attracted by the high rates of return. And they’re repackaging the loans as fancy financial instruments.
What could go wrong?
@Sloegin: I tried that gin once. Terrible.
And here’s the link that goes with that:
@b-psycho: Indeed. Like a few ryes I’ve tried, it should be clearly labelled “Not for internal use”.
And here I’ve been sitting around feeling sorry for myself because peanut butter now triggers migraines for me.
But if you’re looking and if you have a Trader Joe in driving distance, give them a try. I think they’ve still got some nice organic stuff.
I had to look this up for a different reason and discovered that the average American’s food expense is around $10/day.
There’s nothing wrong with Rye that a bit of sweet vermouth and Angostura bitters won’t cure.
Pray the corn crop does well. If the supply of HFCS is affected at all it will mean higher prices for basically everything.
The sad part is that the higher crop prices will somehow fail to trickle down into the pockets of the farmers who get good crops. Instead it will all stick to the fingers of the big agribusinesses and the commodities traders.
and keep in mind that ALL of the peanut butters listed here are crappy brands where they REMOVE THE ACTUAL PEANUT OIL (because it’s more profitable to sell that by itself) and replace it with other, cheaper oils.
so it’s not exactly “peanut butter”, but, you know, finely ground peanut pulp suspended in safflower oil.
I wonder how this is going to affect the WIC budget? I remember getting those giant cardboard tubes of generic peanut butter growing up as a major source of the calories they’d give us.
I remember telling a Republican of my acquaintance that I anticipated food riots in this country by 2020. I may have to revise my estimate forward.
And sugar or HFCS plus salt. Plain old peanuts just not good enough for the American palate.
This is all McCain’s fault for convincing crop pickers to hold out for $50/hr.
@rageahol: At least of all the food diversions and additive crap we live with these days, that one is useful for fried chicken.
THAT will be one body of the triple-homicide to the food chain: a year when the wheat, corn, and soybeans all do poorly is the year Soylent Green appears on the NYMEX, and Citizen Alan gets to watch the food riots on YouTube.
Its only a matter of time.
Damn. Peanut Butter on English Muffins is one of my staple foods.
Oh well. Buh-bye PB! I’ll just move over to Broccoli & Hummus.
Wait. The crop drops 13%, and the price nearly triples?
Something does not compute.
That’s ridiculous and probably unsustainable in a commodity market. I predict a surplus of peanuts come late winter or spring, as companies drop prices to offload unsold peanuts before they go bad.
Yeah, I’ve cut back on my PB usage in the past month or so because the natural PB I usually get on discount for ~$3.00 hasn’t been on sale and, in fact, went up in retail price from $4.29/jar to $4.99.
Now I know why.
Actually, since they’re removing the peanut oil because it’s more profitable to sell independently, the reasoning seems to be that Plain Old Peanuts are too good for the American palate anymore.
Climate change is real, but people who ascribe a climate issue to particular events, e.g., commodity issues, are idiots. And JGabriel nails it in noting that there are market factors and possisibly monopoly or other practices at play in peanut prices.
@RossInDetroit: I heard a segment on the buy here pay here auto industry on NPR today. Except they didn’t talk about securitization, which I felt was the gist of the newspaper story. All they discussed was the high profits these companies make from selling cars at 29% interest and then repossessing and selling them again.
People who know what they are talking about know that drought is a mesoclimate event.
People who are fucking idiots think it’s weather.
For this reason, and many others, I am working towards becoming as self sufficient in food production as possible. I have grown disgusted with relying upon agricorporations for my daily bread, and want to liberate myself.
It is amazing how much food a small backyard can produce.
The only bright spot in it for me is that prices at the natural foods store are now competitive. If I’m praying through the nose anyway, I’ll be down at the farmer’s market using their grinder to make my own peanut butter from fresh peanuts, thank you very much.
The owner of my local health food store tells me that there are NO organic peanuts at all this year, and that there will be no organic peanut butter at all.
I guess we have to get used to more expensive PB just as we finally digested more expensive gas. I wonder if PB will go down in price if next year’s crop is better though…