Author Archives: Mintec

Could the Cheddar Surplus Crisis Be Crumbling Away?


Spend Matters welcomes a guest post from Verity Michie of Mintec.

Over the past few years, U.S. cheddar prices have been on a rollercoaster ride. Record high cheese prices in 2014 encouraged farmers to increase production, which had been facilitated by low feed costs. Between September 2014 and October 2016, prices were down 32%, reaching a six-year low in May this year.

Inclement Weather Patterns Drive Up Coffee Bean Prices

Spend Matters welcomes this guest post from Avneet Deol of Mintec.

The average American consumes around two to three cups of coffee a day. With the average price of coffee around $3.28 for a drink, that puts annual costs in the region of $2,394.40 to $3,591.60. The cost of coffee beans are now at the highest level seen in two years, which means it may be time to budget an extra couple hundred dollars a year for your caffeine habit.

Plenty of Raisins in the Market Drive Prices Down


Spend Matters welcomes this guest post from Jara Zicha, market analyst at Mintec.

Raisin prices have been trending lower since the beginning of the year, on the back of large global supplies. Prices have been falling since September last year and are currently down by around 20%. In fact, prices have been falling since 2012, with the exception of 2015.

Uncertainty Over Crude Oil Production Cuts


Spend Matters welcomes this guest post from Rajiv Joarder, market analyst at Mintec.

Crude oil has been a hot topic of conversation among traders, investors and manufacturers alike since prices plummeted back in 2014. Throughout 2015, and the better part of 2016, continued price volatility for crude oil has been attributed to various factors including economics, geopolitics, weather, transportation and many more. However, few news headlines attracted as much attention as OPEC members meeting to agree production cuts. Until recently, OPEC countries had decided to pump record volumes to preserve their market share in a response to the rising share of cheap shale gas from the U.S.

Brazil Welcomes GM Imports From US


Spend Matters welcomes this guest post from Michael Liberty, market analyst at Mintec.

For the first time in its history, Brazil opened its doors in August 2016 to genetically modified (GM) corn imports from the U.S. In this post, we’ll look to answer why Brazil turned to the U.S., and what the possible implications could be.

Could Black Pepper Prices Be Returning to Normal Levels?


Spend Matters welcomes this guest post from Jara Zicha, market analyst at Mintec.

Global black pepper prices more than tripled between 2009 and 2015, reaching record levels. In my previous article, “Pepper — The Return of Black Gold?,” I explained that the increase in price was attributed to dwindling stocks and surging demand in Southeast Asia. I am pleased to say we may have finally reached the tipping point in the market. After half a decade of price increases we might have finally hit the price ceiling; pepper, prices are falling this year, with a firm intent to continue to drop. So, what broke the marketplace and which factors are currently in play?

Global Cocoa Production Down 6%, Leading to Supply Deficit

Spend Matters welcomes this guest post from Avneet K. Deol of Mintec. With chocolate being one of the most beloved foods worldwide, it is no surprise that manufacturers, consumers, and investors keep a close eye on cocoa supply and demand. As the global cocoa market has undergone some shifts in the past year, it is a good time to look at resulting price changes as well as prospects for 2016/17.

Sharp Propylene Rebound for the United States — Why?

Spend Matters welcomes this guest post from Verity Michie, data analyst at Mintec.
Propylene is one of the most important petrochemicals in the world. Two-thirds of the global propylene demand is for producing polypropylene (PP). Propylene is used as a starter material for production of acrylonitrile, propylene oxide — which is used to produce propylene glycol and acrylic acid, among many other things. Recently propylene prices have surged 44% month-on-month in mid-September, reaching a 13-month high, despite a downward month-on-month feedstock movement. What happened?

Cashew Nut Price Increasing on Tight Supplies

Spend Matters welcomes this guest post from Corrina Hutchings, market analyst at Mintec. The cashew nut is increasing in popularity as research continues to show the health benefits for consuming them – as long as they are not salted or honey roasted! Raw cashews will not only improve the taste of your curries or stir-fries, but will add extra protein and rich nutrients, which are good for your heart, eyes and skin. Compared with other nuts, cashews, like almonds, have low calories per nut. However, before you rush out to stock up, bear in mind cashews are still relatively high in calories compared with other food and you will only need a few. The recent increase in prices, which are up 23% since the start of the year, may also put you off. So what's going on?

The Cattle are Lowing


Spend Matters welcomes this guest post form Emma Jayne Smith, market analyst at Mintec.

Since we last wrote about U.S. cattle back in October 2015, prices have fallen to the lowest level seen in four years. U.S. cattle prices were down 23% year-over-year by the end of August, due to rising domestic production and falling exports.

Ethylene Spot Shoots Up Due to Lower Supply in the US


Spend Matters welcomes this guest post from Rajiv Joarder, market analyst at Mintec.

In recent years, the U.S. has been able to produce ethylene more competitively than the rest of the world due to huge investments in shale gas fracking technology. This has been advantageous, as ethylene is the leading petrochemical used to make plastics. Popular packaging materials like high-density polyethylene (HDPE) and low-density polyethylene (LDPE) all have an ethylene base.