The feeling that comes with dipping a spoon into a pot of Nutella and eating it can only be described as pure bliss.
The sticky aftermath, calorie counting and sugar coma that follow are exactly the opposite. And these messy results are comparable to the mess the hazelnut industry is in because of Nutella lovers everywhere.
Ferrero, the company behind Nutella, uses roughly a quarter of the world's hazelnut crop to produce its sugary spread.
In August, a ton of hazelnuts sold for $10,500. Compare that to February's price tag of $6,500 per ton, and you can see the steep increase for yourself. The hazelnut industry is in dire straits.
Hazelnuts are notoriously difficult to grow and harvest. The majority of the crop comes from a relatively small, steep strip of land on the coast of Turkey.
Most of the nuts are still harvested by families in the area, resulting in a much lower production rate than more commercialized crops.
With Nutella becoming more popular than ever, consumers have gone crazy for hazelnuts. Responding to the demand, farmers in Oregon, Australia and Chile have launched their own farms.
As the hazelnut industry expands, scientists are working to develop a more resilient nut.
Ferrero has also acquired Turkey's leading hazelnut manufacturer, Oltan Group, ensuring that it receives the majority of the country's harvest.
Soon, Ferrero hopes that Nutella will be less expensive than ever before.
via NPR, Photo Courtesy: Tumblr