A SHORTAGE of cardamom in the two main producers, Guatemala and India, appears to be behind recent price rises for cardamom oil.
Cardamom oil was recently quoted at a spot price $140 a kg compared with $120 a kg the previous week.
Sources who spoke to said that Guatemala’s cardamom crop appeared to be down from last year. Combined with lower production in India, this has resulted in a shortage of cardamom globally.
A Guatemalan cardamom oil supplier said that prices were high because of low production in these two countries. India, whose cardamom crop starts around July/August has had a reduced crop this year and this has resulted in the country importing more cardamom from Guatemala, reducing availability of cardamoms for producing oil, he said.
He said that this year’s Guatemalan cardamom crop, which starts harvesting in September/October was likely to be down from last year by around 10%.
One UK cardamom oil importer agreed that prices were firm just now but said this may not be permanent.
“The situation should improve once more material becomes available,” he said
Guatemala is currently in the early stages of harvesting its cardamom crop.
Reports in the Indian press say that the crop there was reduced by hot weather in April and May followed by rains and storms in the June to August monsoon period.