Quebec food industry faces mustard shortage

Pandemic shortages of COVID-19 and extreme weather conditions have put one of the most popular condiments in jeopardy: mustard.

At the Lasalle Drive-In restaurant, customers may soon be forced to enjoy their burgers without the yellow stuff, as a shortage of mustard seeds leads to dwindling supplies and soaring prices.

“Right now, we’re good for a month at least,” Drive-In co-owner George Tsimiklis said. “Every day we hear something new about the shortage.”

According to food industry analyst Sylvain Charlebois, the shortage – caused by a drought in Western Canada and flooding in Western Europe – could have different effects on different brands.

“I guess you can actually see inventory being affected for well-known brands, but you can actually find high quality,” he said.

Morehouse Foods saw the writing on the wall around Christmas.

The Montreal manufacturer has stocked up on metric tons of mustard seeds, which it now keeps in giant bins.

The company produces popular brands of yellow mustard, but 80% of its production is premium mustard, but the cost of both is rising.

“The cost of a bottle of mustard has doubled compared to last year,” said Jean-Louis Chausse, director of food sales at Morehouse.

He believes the shortage will ease in November…it’s not exactly the ideal time to barbecue, but it’s better than ever.

“What’s better than mustard on a hot dog, right? »

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