Prices of the spice have risen 11% month on month and are up 5% year on year to £1.33/kg amid fears that Indian cumin crops will be down as much as 30% this year.
According to the Grocer, last year’s strong yields and consequent drop in price has also prompted some growers in India to abandon the spice in favour of more profitable crops such as coriander and fenugreek.
“Farmers are getting financially stronger by choosing which plants to sow and when to sell, holding on to stocks until they find price levels attractive,” Branka Veljovic, spices sourcing manager at European spice supplier Santa Maria told our sister publication.
However, Tasneem Backhouse, sales and marketing director at EHL Ingredients suggested that such pre-harvest price rises may be temporary and that the firm is working hard to keep prices stable “and protect our customers form market fluctuations.”
“We predict the price rises to be temporary and expect them to level out once the next harvest is collected and available to purchase,” said Backhouse.
“Demand is steady among our customers in the food manufacturing, retail and wholesale sectors and we have not noticed a huge difference in demand versus this time last year.”