Bad news for pistachio lovers: the impossibly tasty shelled nuts are in short supply this year because the US harvest is on track to be its lowest in almost a decade.
Global production is estimated to plunge 86,000 metric tons from the previous year to 529,000 tons, according to data from the US Department of Agriculture. As a result of lower available supply, world consumption and ending stocks are expected to fall, the USDA says.
Pistachio crops alternate between low high and low yielding years on a regular cycle. This is a low year, and a “lack of chill hours in the winter of 2015-16”, combined with a drought, has meant the US crop has been smaller than expected.
Turkey is seeing a big surge in production, but the Turks eat most of the pistachios they produce.
In other nut production news, walnuts are having a storming year with global production forecast to rise by 155,000 tons on the previous year to 2.0 million tons.