Climate problems affect the plate of consumers with a predictable increase in pasta

Climate problems affect the plate of consumers with a predictable increase in pasta

Louis Torronde-C19 Tamar news

Consumers will have to pay more for their packets of pasta as pasta manufacturers warn of a possible upcoming shortage of durum wheat, caused by severe weather problems in North America and Europe.

“Climate change is endangering the pasta market,” warned pasta manufacturers on Monday 16 August. The cause is “too much rain in Europe and an unprecedented drought in Canada”, which leads to a “shortage of durum wheat, the only raw material for pasta, and the historic surge in world prices”, they said.

Canada, hit this summer by a heat wave of exceptional intensity, is the first country producer of durum wheat, which it alone represents two thirds of world trade. The “heat dome” that affected the country, “should lead to a crop (…) of less than 4.2 million tons, or 32% less than the average of the last five years and nearly 30% less than the forecast of July 20,” according to figures from the Canadian statistical office StatCan, reported in the release.

“With a historically low stock, it will not be possible to supply the world market with stored hard wheat,” say millers and semolina producers. In addition to this, there is “an insufficient harvest in Europe with 7.3 million tons for a need of 9.5 million tons”, they say, indicating that the heavy rains that hit France during flowering and harvest “greatly reduce the usable potential of French durum wheat for pasta”.

A 35% increase in the world reference price of durum wheat in just one month

Since mid-July, “the world reference price of durum wheat has undergone a historic increase of 35% in just one month, an increase that could accelerate even further once Canada has finished harvesting and confirm a global shortage of durum wheat,” according to the industry.

Canada is one of the world’s largest wheat producers and exporters. Its annual production averages more than 25 million tonnes and it exports about 15 million tonnes.

In this context, they ask the public authorities to put in place “an emergency plan” to enable them to ensure their supply of French wheat and to ensure that distributors pass on “the explosion in the price of durum wheat in the selling prices to get through this exceptional crisis”.

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