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Chocolate could become more expensive

Cocoa is more expensive than it has been in decades. In just one year the price has doubled. This could have consequences for the prices of chocolate.

The price of cocoa reaches a record high. On the New York Commodity Exchange it reached an all-time high of $5,874 per ton. This means that the price of the most important ingredient for making chocolate has doubled within a year.

Consumers will feel the effects of the rising price of cocoa: chocolate will probably become more expensive again. One of the world's largest chocolate producers, the US confectionery manufacturer Hershey, did not rule out price increases. “Given current cocoa prices, we will use every tool in our toolbox, including pricing, to manage the business,” said Hershey CEO Michele Buck.

Increasing demand and poor harvests

Increasing demand on the one hand and crop failures in Ghana and Ivory Coast, the largest cocoa producers, on the other hand, have been driving up prices for years. “There will be greater fluctuations in prices and availability for some foods,” said agricultural expert Michael Berger from the environmental protection organization WWF. “There will be years when certain products such as avocado, cocoa, coffee, mango, coconut, papaya and bananas may become more scarce.”

For many products, there is only a narrow geographical belt worldwide where the necessary climatic conditions for cultivation exist. More frequent extreme weather events increase the risk of crop failures. “This makes it more difficult for trading companies to calculate. The uncertainty and shortages lead to higher prices,” says Berger.

Chocolate prices increased for a long time

Chocolate had already become significantly more expensive in the past: the consumer price index for chocolate bars in Germany was 119.1 in 2023. In 2020 it was 100 points. According to the statistics portal Statista, prices rose by around 19.1 percent compared to 2020.

The consumer price index measures the average price development of goods and services purchased by private households for consumption purposes.

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