French Butter Crisis Threatens Croissant Price Hikes

Photo via Getty Images.
Photo via Getty Images.

Butter supplies are so strained in France that, unfortunately, the nation may be facing—quelle horreur!—sharp inflation in the price of croissants and other delicious buttery pastries.

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That alarming news comes from the Guardian (via Fark):

“Last April, we were paying €2,500 a tonne,” said Matthieu Labbé of the baking industry body FEB. “Now it’s €5,300. At best, consumers are going to have to pay more. At worst, we may no longer be able to get butter.”

A nationwide pastry penury is possible, said Fabien Castanier of the federation of French biscuit and cake-makers. “The industry is under unsustainable pressure,” he said. “And it’s going to get worse. There’s a real risk of butter running out.”

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A possibility of bakers no longer able to get butter! A real risk of butter running out! But how can a country run short of such a staple, you ask? Where is the butter going? The Guardian explains:

The rise in wholesale butter prices is mainly blamed on falling milk yields across Europe but especially in France, together with rising demand both domestically and internationally and the fact that most milk is used to make cheese or cream, not butter.

Sabotaged by fromage!

French farmers, meanwhile, say they aren’t making enough on their milk due to excess supplies of powdered milk swamping the market. Invisible hand, my ass.

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Senior Editor, Attic Haunter, Jezebel

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DISCUSSION

Where’s the powdered milk coming from, though?

I had a conversation about this recently with a high-level colleague with knowledge of the dairy industry in North America. Apparently the Canadian dairy industry got on Trump’s bad side recently....if I understand this correctly, the summary is that the U.S. seems to have this mentality of MORE ALWAYS, and is getting pissy that Canada won’t just buy all their (super factory farmed, not-always-high-quality) extra milk when we have way more regulatory controls on our domestic industry. KINDA WONDERING if France might be similar, here? I should google instead of musing aloud but if you can’t talk speculative shit on the internet, what else do we have?