One gauge of avocado prices is having its biggest gain in almost a decade as consumers weigh the latest rhetoric from Donald Trump on his threat to close the U.S. border with Mexico, a major supplier of the fruit.
The Mexico City Hass price from Michoacan, the heartland of Mexican avocado production, jumped 34 percent on Tuesday. That would be the biggest one-day gain since April 13, 2009.
There are a couple of possible drivers for the spike. It may be due to increased demand in anticipation of a border shutdown, or it follows Trump’s toned down rhetoric on a possible closing. For Rabobank analyst Roland Fumasi, it’s probably more about the former — a demand shift to get product into the U.S. quickly, in case the border is closed.
Mexican avocados account for 75 percent to 80 percent of U.S. consumption, and California for about 16 percent, according to data from the Haas Avocado Board. Chile and Peru supply most of the rest. Avocado, once mainly confined to dips and salads, is now seen as a super-food thanks to its nutritional characteristics and smooth texture. Some people even eat their pits roasted.