Mustard Shortage: When Will This Condiment Be Back in Supermarkets?
Through Martin Leduc
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That’s the question of millions: “When will we finally find mustard on our shelves?” »
In recent weeks it has been a miracle to find mustard at Carrefour, Intermarché or any other store. The country is almost alive a lack. A difficult situation for the French, for whom the spice has become an integral part of the kitchen.
Why is there a shortage?
We explained it in a previous article. France buys 80% of its mustard seeds in Canada. In 2021 Canada had been hit by a huge drought and huge fires. Hence the lack of spices, which are currently widespread in France. “The mustard makers have never seen that before,” choked the grandmaster of the Dijon Mustard Brotherhood.
Joined this week by News.frAccording to Canada’s Department of Agriculture, “Canada exported 157 tons of mustard seeds to France in 2021, down 80% from 2020.”
Coupled with a poor French harvest, the result is what we know: “The shelves are empty, we can tell. And it’s the same trouble for restaurateurs and fast food by the way,” a Super U spokesman said in May 2022 News.fr.
Are we seeing the end of the tunnel?
But then, a few months later, do we finally see the end of the tunnel? “Not at the moment”, regrets withNews.frLaure Ohleyer, mustard sector coordinator at the Association of Mustard Seed Producers in Burgundy (APGMB).
“For three or four years, French harvests have only been around 50 for various reasons, such as the climate or the infestation of flea beetles (small insects that eat plants that love mustard so much that gardeners advise plants to keep them away from others % Plant Editor’s note)” she laments.
Even if the French harvests promise to be satisfactory for 2022, it will still take a while for the situation to return to normal. “We can rely on that Period between September and November‘ Laure Ohleyer explains.
However, there is something even better on the mustard front: “The first projections of the sown area for the next agricultural campaign 2022-2023 indicate a larger area, the forecast is 225,000 hectares. That number is higher than 2021’s 124,700 hectares and 2020’s 103,700 hectares,” says Canada’s Department of Agriculture.
Assuming a return to more normal yields in the 2022-2023 growing season, subject to better moisture availability, Canada forecasts production of 175,000 tonnes. This would represent a 250% increase over 2021 production
The country, which accounts for 22% of the world’s mustard seed production, is therefore optimistic.
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