September 26, 2022

Taylor Daily Press

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The war in Ukraine leads to a shortage of "hummus"

The war in Ukraine leads to a shortage of “hummus”

The chickpea supply is at risk in many countries, not least because of the war in Ukraine. After all, due to sanctions against Russia, the country exports much less chickpeas. Let this be the main ingredient for a popular dip.

evdgsource: The Guardian, euronews

According to the Global Pulse Consortium, chickpea supply could drop by up to 20 percent this year. This is because production is being jeopardized by less favorable weather conditions on the one hand, but more so by the war in Ukraine. There is now a global shortage of chickpeas.

Primary source of protein

Russia is one of the largest exporters of chickpeas, accounting for a quarter of all global trade. But since the invasion of Ukraine on February 24, more and more sanctions have been imposed on the country, which means it is hardly able to export. Also in Ukraine itself, the chickpea crop cannot be exported due to the ongoing war in the country.

Russia exports at least 200 thousand to 250 thousand tons annually. “When the war began in February, the entire stockpile was destroyed,” Jeff van Beveninge, chief executive of Columbia Green International, a grain and legume trader, told Reuters. At the same time, the demand for chickpeas increased, because weather conditions also caused a decrease in the yield in countries such as Mexico and Australia.

A decline in chickpea yield could have severe consequences for countries such as India, Bangladesh and Pakistan. These countries rely on legumes as their primary source of protein, and are also countries where families are already struggling to cover the rising costs of food imports such as wheat.

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Increasing prices in the supermarket

Also in the United States – the fourth largest exporter of chickpeas – exports of chickpeas will decrease. US farmers planted less than 5 percent of the acre this year as bad weather kept them afloat and prioritized more profitable staple crops such as wheat and corn. According to the US government, the country’s stockpiles are down more than 10 percent from last year, as stocks were already low after devastating droughts in the country.

In the meantime, the price of the current range of chickpeas and its derivatives is rising. In the UK, prices have gone up by as much as 10 per cent in some supermarkets. In the United States, the price of chickpeas is 12% higher.