Article Comment 

Our View: The price of pecans in China




Where''s the bacon? 


High corn prices have sliced into the hog business. 


What''s up with the price of Georgia pecans? 


The Chinese have developed a taste for Southern pecans. 


Why''s your caffeine habit getting so expensive? 


The coffee craze has gone global. 


While prices at the pump are already up due to increased global demand, some of our favorite staples are following suit for the same reason. 


These days, it seems we''re pumping more corn into our tanks -- in the form of ethanol -- than we are using as food. 


The many faces of corn are driving its cost up to record levels and, consequently, the cost to fill the hogs'' bellies. So the price of those pork bellies, where we get our sizzling slices of bacon, has jumped to $130 per 100 pounds from $94 per 100 pounds this time last year. 


Locally, the price increases haven''t hit restaurants yet, but they''ve made their way to the grocery stores. 


And while the pork predicament may be our own fault, in a struggle for fuel independence, we can point the finger at our friends in China for our pricey pecans. 


In 2005, China took in about 1 percent of the U.S.''s 280 million pounds of exported pecans. They got hooked. 


In 2009, China took a whopping 28 percent of the pecan pie. 


This Thanksgiving, we may have to revert to the sweet potato pie sans that pecan topping. OK, maybe we''ll be less affected locally, where we have an abundance of backyard pecan trees. 


Meanwhile, we''re all to blame for the coffee prices. Higher fuel costs play a part, but mostly it''s the high demand for the black stuff. The price for a pound of raw coffee beans has nearly doubled in the past year. And we can''t get enough. 


Demand has increased by 23 percent over the last decade, worldwide. And where specialty roasters used to be the only ones demanding the highest-quality beans, even the traditional household brands are getting in on the select roasts. 


Next time you notice a spike in the price of your favorite foods, just think, it might be a craving from the other side of the world driving it up. How''s that for thinking globally?



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Reader Comments

Article Comment hope commented at 7/9/2011 6:11:00 PM:

With our manufacturing jobs going and gone globally, NAFTA has dealt the U.S. a blow that we may never recover from. At the same time that Omnova Solutions is having the union decertified here, they are opening a plant in China. How's that for thinking globally.


Article Comment hope commented at 7/9/2011 6:30:00 PM:

NAFTA has dealt the U.S. a blow that we may never recover from.
Should have been NAFTA, Bush and the Republicans have dealt us a blow that we, the U.S.,may never recover from.


Article Comment jls commented at 7/9/2011 8:06:00 PM:

Hope, I understand what you're saying; Republicans certainly have a LOT to do with our current economic sorry state of affairs. However, I don't think there is much that anyone could've done to completely stop the steady march of "globalization". All we can do now is regroup and try to make the best of things as a country, and realize that we will probably NEVER have the same standard of living that we enjoyed until just a few years ago.


Article Comment frank commented at 7/10/2011 8:41:00 AM:

NAFTA was signed into law by Bill Clinton on December 8, 1993. Last time I checked, slick Willy was not a Republican.


Article Comment frank commented at 7/10/2011 8:46:00 AM:

NAFTA is the NORTH AMERICAN Free Trade Agreement. Last time I checked, China was not in North America.


Article Comment hope commented at 7/10/2011 9:22:00 AM:

@frank;the depression that Bush left us with when his term expired!


Article Comment frank commented at 7/10/2011 11:03:00 AM:

Hopeless, are you old enough to remember phonograph records? When one would get scratched or dirty the needle would jump back a groove and play the last couple of seconds of audio over and over again. It is like if the lyrics of the song were "blame Bush" it would just keep saying "blame Bush", "blame Bush", "blame Bush", over and over until you slapped it.

Now you know the origin of the phrase; "You sound like a broken record". You also now know the cure. You socialists go ahead and keep it up with the broken record act. Come 11/12 you are gonna get the cure...


Article Comment kj commented at 7/10/2011 1:28:00 PM:

Georgia has more than just the price of pecans to worry about, though. Thanks to the farm-labor shortage caused by their unfounded fear of illegal immigrants, prices will be on the way up as millions of dollars of Georgia crops rot in the fields this summer and fall for want of labor to pick them.


Article Comment frank commented at 7/10/2011 2:15:00 PM:

Cut out a few hundred billion $$ in welfare payments and shorten the unemployment pay period back to normal and you would not only have ample labor to pick those crops, but you would eliminate both the deficit and illegal immigration problems in the process. The root of the illegal immigration issue is that we are paying US citizens NOT to work. I don't have any problem with the Mexicans, in fact I respect most of them for wanting to work and support their families without hand-outs. The reason they are coming here is because the jobs are here. Jobs Americans should be doing themselves.


Article Comment hope commented at 7/11/2011 11:13:00 AM:

@frank;blaming Bush;when I saw Bush on T.V. asking the taxpayers for $700 billion dollars and if he didn't get it, our economy would collapse. Guilty as charged!


Article Comment pat henry commented at 7/12/2011 7:40:00 PM:

Hopless, I think you're referring to Barry asking for money or the economy would collapse. Just llike Barry wanting to raise the debt ceiling or the economy will collapse. This while demonizing CEOs who make too much money, and take welfare checks out of welfare idiots hands, with Jeff Immelt standing next to him, the same Immelt, CEO of GE, who paid NO TAXES!!!!! Liberalism is a mental illness, Hopeless. Bush has been out of office for over two years, at what point do you move on and realize that Barry is peeing in the sandbox


Article Comment hope commented at 7/13/2011 9:27:00 AM:

@pat henry:Another listener of FOX news that they have taught to distort the meaning of the truth. As the UK describes the FOX network as the "scum" network owned by a "scumbag".


Article Comment pat henry commented at 7/13/2011 10:45:00 PM:

Ha, Hopeless!!!! I can't stand Fox News, there you go with that limited liberal mind of yours, placing labels on people. I thought you libs hated that sort of thing. I could say that you fantasize over that little Maddow boy on MSNBC, but I can actually debate facts of an issue-not step down to the playground antics of mental midgets.


Article Comment hope commented at 7/14/2011 12:12:00 PM:

@pat henry;Just in----Voters blame Bush more than Obama for the economy, with 54% of those surveyed say Bush is responsible for the current condition of the economy, compared to just 27% who blame Obama. Among independent voters, a key 2012 voting bloc, 49% percent point the finger at the former GOP president, while 24% blame Obama. See you at the polls in 2012.


Article Comment pat henry commented at 7/14/2011 4:16:00 PM:

Hopeless, when citing statistics it is customary to also cite the source of those statistics for credibility and validation sake. If you do not, as in this case, you just look like someone quoting unproven statistics that mean nothing. The funny thing for me is that the Dems had control of Congress during the financial crisis. Congress, in case you didn't take basic civics, is the most powerful of the three branches of American government. This is evident today when a Republican majority House is not going to let Barry get what he wants this time. Plesae bring more to the discussion than hyperbole.


Article Comment hope commented at 7/14/2011 5:05:00 PM:

@pat henry---------United Press International


Article Comment frank commented at 7/14/2011 7:22:00 PM:

Hopeless, that poll was actually conducted by Quinnipiac University which is a tiny liberal arts college near Boston. Next thing you will come up with is a poll that says 85% of Libyans like Gaddafi conducted by his brother-in-law.

Newsflash: After 3 years a sitting President owns the economy and the state of the union. Time to quit passing the buck and start fixing the buck...


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