Are We In For Higher Bread, Cereal and Flour Prices Soon?
Old man winter just doesn’t want to let go of the mid-west this spring. The snow, rain and freezing temps have been relentless, and those conditions don’t mean great things for the crops trying to grow in that region of the U.S. Wonder what that means we’ll pay more for in the grocery store soon!
Snow and below average, freezing Spring temperatures across the Great Plains don’t bode well for the red winter wheat crop this season. That crop is planted in the fall, gets a head start, lays dormant for the winter protected by a blanket of snow and begins to grow towards maturity in the Spring and Summer. With many April temps hitting historic lows, the latest U.S. Department of Agriculture weekly crop report shows 32% of the current wheat crop rated fair and 33% rated poor or very poor. Red winter wheat yields could drop by as much as 25%. “I’m going to assume 75% of my wheat froze.” said a farmer in Kansas. Gary Millershaki told Bloomberg “It looks like someone sprayed a defoliant on it.”
That’s unfortunate for consumers, because red winter wheat is the class of wheat that many breads, cereals and all purpose flours are made of. With red winter wheat prices expected to jump by at least 15%, that can only mean higher prices for flour, cereal and bread products for us in the grocery store.
If you’re like me, you throw a lot of bread and cereal into your grocery cart each week! Are you prepared to pay more for those grocery staples? Will higher prices cause you to buy less bread and cereal?