Nutty problems for spread

Last updated 21:52 21/08/2014

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If it hails in Turkey does the price of Nutella rise in New Zealand?

Maybe, given that hazlenut prices have surged 60 per cent this year to a decade high.

The sharp rise follows hail storms and frost in late March which destroyed hazel flowers on the steep slopes near Turkey's Black Sea coast where about 70 per cent of the world's hazlenuts are grown.

Hazlenut prices have risen from US$6500 (NZ$7700) per tonne in February, to US$10,500.

The Guardian reported the full extent of the damage was not yet clear, but the Turkish industry was braced for a harvest as low as 540,000 tonnes, compared to pre-frost expectations of up to 800,000 tonnes.

Italian-based company Ferrero, which makes the hazlenut spread Nutella, used 25 per cent of the world's hazlenut supply, making 180 million kg of the spread each year.

But the company could be insulated from the latest price moves after recently buying Turkey's largest hazelnut processor Oltan, which has eight factories shelling, chopping and roasting nuts.

Ferrero USA released a statement saying there was no foreseeable impact on the availability of Nutella in that country. The company said nothing about price impacts.


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