Your Favorite Yellow Condiment Could Soon Be in Short Supply

If someone pulls up next to your car this summer asking if you have any Grey Poupon, you may find your glove compartment empty. Because on the heels of recent reports of possible Sriracha and oats shortages, we may be facing another shortage. And this one could affect a popular condiment that is yellow, tangy, and, according to Sporked staff writer Jordan Myrick, a good substitute for an afternoon cup of coffee.  

That’s right, climate change is affecting Canadian mustard seed crops. According to Newsweek, Canada is the world’s second largest producer of mustard seeds (France is the first). At this point, I don’t even think giving the plants poutine would help (although eating poutine would sure help cheer me up). Due to unseasonably hot weather in southern Canada, mustard plants that usually have eight to ten seeds in a pod are only yielding four to six this year, according to AGCanada. Christophe Planes, sales director for one of France’s largest mustard producers, told France24 that the situation is a “crisis we haven’t seen for 25 years” with mustard production “down 50%.” And we all know what is likely to come after a significant decrease in mustard production: mustard price hikes.     

For as long as I can remember, my dad has called French’s style plain old mustard “Cheap Yellow Mustard.” Is he going to have to start calling it “Suddenly-More-Expensive-Due-to-Scarcity-Driven-Price-Hikes Yellow Mustard”? Because that’s a lot less catchy. We might have to start calling it “SMEDTSDPH Yellow Mustard” for short. Either way, if you are a mustard lover, you have been warned. The golden sauce may soon be worth its weight in actual gold. Or, you know, the price may just go up by a dollar or two. Either way, you could stock up just to be safe.


About the Author

Jessica Block

Jessica Block is a freelance contributor to Sporked, a comedian, a baker, a food writer, and a firm believer that Trader Joe's may just be the happiest place on earth. She loves spicy snacks, Oreos, baking bread, teeny tiny avocados, and trying new foods whenever she can. Also, if you give her a bag of Takis she will be your best friend.

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