Seeds of Change to Counter Dijon Mustard Shortage
French Dijon mustard producers hope to soon be restocking shelves after shifting their seed growing to France’s Burgundy region following an ongoing shortage due to problems with pests, drought, and supply chain issues, according to reports by Agence France-Presse.
What to Know:
France’s Dijon region has been famous for its mustard seeds since the Middle Ages, but there has been a shortage of Dijon mustard since crops were decimated by pests, cutting the output between 2017 and 2021 to only a third of normal production.
Canada supplied around 80% of the mustard seeds used by French makers of the spicy condiment until 2021 when a drought slashed the Canadian harvest by half.
The Burgundy region, which surrounds Dijon, has long grown the mustard seeds as well, but now mustard makers are offering Burgundy farmers incentives to increase production by offering to pay 2000 euros per ton for seeds in 2023, more than double what they paid in 2021.
The incentives help counter the rising cost of fertilizer caused by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and encourages farmers to grow what has long been considered a “local crop.”
The number of Burgundy seed producers jumped this year from 160 to more than 500, and by next year Burgundy should be producing 15,000 tons of mustard seed, meeting 40% of the needs of mustard makers.
This is a summary of the article “Seeds of change for Dijon mustard amid shortage,” published by Nature on September 14, 2022. The full article can be found on phys.org.
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