California. So Hot Right Now.
Last year was the warmest year in California’s recorded history. This exacerbates not only the drought but the effects of the drought
California’s extreme recent conditions are decimating the state’s crops. All you have to do is turn on your television or open up Facebook, and you’ll see people talking about this huge and seemingly never-ending issue.
The three-year dry spell has affected 98% of the state, leading to water rationing among citizens and the rising costs to farmers to obtain water to supply their crops.
It takes approximately 72 gallons of water to grow one pound of avocados. As of right now, farmers pay $1,500 per acre-foot for water. Forty years ago, it cost $72 per acre-foot.
That’s…. a big f-ing increase.
So Stop Asking Why Adding Guac Costs Extra
No, your favorite buttery green fruit will not go away forever. I’m pretty sure Californians would have constant mental breakdowns if that were to actually happen.
It may, however, become an item of luxury.
And we are mostly to blame. In 1999, Americans consumed about 1.1 pounds of the fruit per capita. In 2014, it was 5.8 pounds per capita.
Yeah, we got a little obsessed…
So combine a drought, high cost of cultivation, and a nationwide obsession, and you’ve got an avocado dilemma.
California is not our only source of avocados, of course. Other imports from countries such as Mexico and Chile, make up 85 percent of the avocados consumed in the U.S. year-round.
But those countries have avocado issues of their own… And that’s for a whole other article (along with the politics and lobbying that make drought matters worse here in California).
As long as people want something, they will find a way to get it
You might not always be able to afford to buy a sack of avocados every time you hit up the grocery store, though.
They will undoubtedly continue to rise in prices as the drought continues.
A 2014 study from the University of Arizona predicted a 28 percent increase in avocado prices as a result of the drought.
“[P]eople are the least price-sensitive when it comes to those items, and they’re more willing to pay what it takes to get them.”
So that $6 avocado I’ll have to buy next year better be the best f-ing avocado ever, am I right?