Supermarkets across the state of New York are grappling with a nationwide blueberry shortage, causing concern and frustration among consumers as many people rely on blueberries for various dishes and desserts during the holiday season.

99.1 The Whale logo
Get our free mobile app

The blueberry shortage impacting the United States can be traced back to extreme heat conditions in Peru which is the largest exporter of blueberries in the world.

Cause of the Blueberry Shortage

Peru experienced adverse effects from the El Niño weather phenomenon. The El Niño event has resulted in higher temperatures and drier weather conditions in Peru and as a result, the country's blueberry harvest has been significantly reduced by up to 70 percent.

Financial Impact of the Blueberry Shortage

The shortage of blueberries has most definitely had a direct impact on supermarkets in America.  Peru is traditionally the supplier of approximately one-third of its 13 billion pounds of blueberries to the United States. However, this year's smaller harvest has created a scarcity of blueberry supply which has led to a sharp increase in price for consumers. The cost of blueberries has surged astronomically by up to 60 percent, reaching almost $6.00 per pound in many places in New York.

When Blueberry Prices Will Fall?

Blueberry prices are not expected to fall for a few months. North American blueberry-growing states like Oregon, Washington, Georgia, Michigan, California, New Jersey, North Carolina, Florida, Texas, and Minnesota will experience their blueberry growing season in a few months and growers anticipate increased harvests and improved availability. Until then, blueberry prices will remain high in supermarkets until the crops can grow and be harvested.

The Top 5 Nastiest, Germiest Things You Touch in a Grocery Store

You won't believe just how many nasty, germy thinks you touch in a grocery store. The Top 5 will make you want to start wearing rubber gloves when you shop.

Gallery Credit: Gary McCoy

Ten Shortages That Could Affect Your Holiday

Consumer experts seems to be adding new items to the list of things in high demand, but short supply every day. These are the top things on their list that could affect your holiday this year.

Gallery Credit: Nancy Hall

More From 99.1 The Whale