The price of flour is something that you might not give much thought to, but it is a food that many people within the UK see as a necessity. Recently it has been noted that flour and bread prices are set to rise (no pun intended!) after one of the worst UK wheat harvests in 40 years.
The UK and it’s ever changing weather is to blame!
According to the National Farmers Union (NFU), farmers have been struggling after being hit with a triple-whammy of severe weather.
During the autumn period of 2019, the UK saw unusually heavy rain fall which led to waterlogged soil, making it extremely hard for planting. Then we faced not one but three storms, with February 2020 becoming the wettest on month on record. Not to mention the unusually hot and dry spring which caused droughts in many areas!
All in all, due to this our farmers have had a hard time planting crops and keeping the crops growing. This means they can’t provide the UK with the volume we usually expect, according to the chair of the NFU’s crop board “we’re looking at a 30% reduction in our good fields, in some of our poor fields it looks like it could be more”.
Why not just import wheat from elsewhere?
Let us add another factor to the mix (again no pun intended!), Brexit. Wheat prices are always unpredictable, especially when tonnes of this imported each year. If import tax was added, then this would represent a further 40% increase in wheat prices and consequently hike up the price of flour. Also, a miller’s margins are very tight, meaning they have no choice but to pass on some of this to the consumers by raising prices.
So, what does this mean for me?
Now for a bakery like us, flour is one of our main ingredients, without flour we do not have home-baked items, without this we have no sales.
If you’re a smart cookie (the last pun, we promise!) you’ll have probably already worked out that some of this increase will need to be passed onto our customers in order for bakeries like us to keep getting business. So, if your regular blueberry muffin has seemed on the pricier side recently, this explains why!
As a nation who loves a sweet treat, will we accept the increase and continue to indulge, or will we get into a flap(jack) and curb our spend?
Time will tell!
At Whites Bakeries, we try to keep our prices as low as possible whilst keeping the same exceptional taste and service for our customers. We’re awarded to YPO’s DPS for the provision of bread and bakery goods. If you would like more information, please contact [email protected]