Drought Could Lead to Spaghetti and Pizza Sauce Shortage
As if things couldn't get worse now there is word that the ongoing drought in the western United States could affect the prices you pay for pizza and the sauce you put on your pasta. That's right, we could be looking at a major tomato shortage across the country and across the world this fall.
Extremely dry conditions in California, a drought that is being called the worst in more than 1,200 years, would be the reason why you and I might be paying more for our favorite tomato-based products and recipes. California is responsible for about 25% of the world's tomatoes and tomato-based products.
You may have already noticed there have been increases in prices for cans of tomato sauce and ketchup during the summer months. Those products are actually increasing in price faster than the average inflation rate and their costs are expected to go higher.
If you haven't noticed a price increase for ketchup and tomato paste then get ready for sticker shock the next time you head to the grocery to purchase one of those items. Tomato wholesalers say their prices have increased by as much as 80% over the past year and those higher prices are just now beginning to make their way to consumers.
Looking at prices over the past month, tomato sauce is up about 17% from one year ago while the price of ketchup has increased by about 23% in just a year's time. Eventually, those price increases will make it to your pizza or your french fries so you can't say we didn't warn you they were coming.