Do you remember when you were a child and a peanut butter sandwich was a staple food in your diet? Perhaps you are like me and still like to enjoy a PBJ now and then. I started thinking about peanut butter after receiving an e-mail from Smuckers, one of the largest peanut butter manufacturing companies in the world.
The 2010 peanut crop was exposed to intense heat and insufficient rainfall resulting in reduced crop yield and high Aflatoxins.
What are Aflatoxins?
It is a naturally occurring mycotoxin found in various crops. The level of aflatoxins is influenced by the weather, which was very poor in the southern part of the US this past growing season.
The FDA has established regulatory limits to ensure product safety and has called the 2010 peanut crop (which is now being harvested and used) as the “worst aflatoxin crop in the last 30 years.” An estimated one-third of the crop is expected to be inedible and will likely be sent to make peanut oil.
High aflatoxin levels result in higher costs due to having to remill and blanche, high shrink losses, and production plant downtime which leads to a supply shortage.
How does this affect the Peanut Butter consumer?
Peanut market pricing has increased 50%. Add this to the jump in sugar prices, resin (jar) increases, and higher prices on polypropylene (lid) and it totals price hikes for the final product when it reaches the store shelves.
It also means that there will be temporary shortages and out of stocks on some of your favorite peanut butter varieties including:
- Jif 12 oz. creamy
- Jif 18 oz. creamy peanut butter and honey
- Jif 18 oz. Reduced fat extra crunchy spread
- Jif 27.3 oz. Simply Jif Creamy
- Jif 40 oz. Reduced fat creamy spread
- Jif 4 lb. creamy
- Jif 4 lb. extra crunchy
- Jif 2/40 oz. reduced fat creamy
The above items will become available as the new crop comes in, plan on seeing these gradually appearing on our shelves again beginning in Oct 2011 and continuing through Jan 2012.
Who would have thought so much effort goes into that simple peanut butter sandwich you have been eating since you were a youngster?
Enjoy the day!