What You Need to Know About the Sugar Shortage
El Niño has created international drought; demand now exceeds supply.
It's a bitter pill to swallow, but we've been living in sugar heaven for the past five years, according to agriculture experts. And now, with El Niño's warmer weather touching down on places like India, China, and Thailand, the world will experience a sugar drought throughout 2016 and 2017.
Crops in recent history have easily produced enough sugar to exceed demand, which keeps prices down (and suggests the world has a growing sweet tooth). But in 2016 and 2017, consumption will be outpace production by 5 million metric tons, according to a Green Pool study cited in Bloomberg. What's more, the gap continues to grow; it's already widened by 19% since January. That drove the price of raw sugar up by nearly 10% in 2016 so far. It also hurts general plant health, which influences future forecasts.
What does this mean for the average consumer? You may be spending a tad more for your mid-day sugar fix. And there's no way to sweeten the deal.