Guarda, we’re not exactly dancing on inflation’s grave over here, but we’ll take what we can get.
Di mercoledì, we’ll get an official update when the July consumer price index report comes out. Most economists expect to see that inflation eased last month, per 8.7% a partire dal 9.1% nel mese di giugno. Ancora, that’s not great — it’s still historically high, but we’re trending in the right direction.
Cooling inflation is good news, even if some of the factors behind it are… not so great. In definitiva, people are pulling back spending because they’re struggling to make ends meet after a year of relentless price increases that have far outpaced wage growth. Recession fears are real, and even if inflation has peaked, it’s not likely to go back down to pre-pandemic levels quickly.
NUMBER OF THE DAY: $ 5,000
Energy bills in the UK are expected to top
$ 5,000 a year starting in January
, or about
$ 430 a month on average
, according to new estimates from research firm Cornwall Insight
. That means that nearly a third of households will face so-called fuel poverty
, meaning their income after paying for energy will fall below the poverty line
We take food news very seriously here at Nightcap HQ, so when we heard that France was running low on mustard, we had to dig in.
Ecco l'accordo: The French amore mustard
. They are the world’s biggest consumer of the condiment
, consuming about
2.2 pounds of it per person every year
, secondo il New York Times
. Is it as essential as butter
? Non. But it’s right up there
. E proprio ora, because of a one-two punch of climate change and war
, many grocery shelves are empty
, leaving the famously food-obsessed people scrambling for an alternative
“I don’t think we have ever seen anything like it,” says Marc Désarménien, proprietor of Maison Fallot, a family run business that’s been producing mustard for generations in the town of — I kid you not — Dijon. (Did y’all know Dijon was the place and not just the style of mustard? Fascinating. Is it like how Champagne from anywhere else is just sparkling white wine? Comunque, I digress…)
“My grandfather has lived through two world wars and the post-war period when there were ration tickets in France
, but even then there was mustard
!” Désarménien tells my colleague Camille Knight
. “Now whether you go to Lille
, Bordeaux or Strasbourg
, nobody has any mustard left
. It’s all sold within a few hours.
What’s going on?
A couple of things, both of which are large-scale disasters hurting far more than condiments.
1. Climate change. Your Dijon may be genuinely from Dijon, but the seeds themselves are grown in an area of Canada that’s been hit with extreme heat liked to global warming. That’s cut the usual yield in half.
So naturally, mustard makers would look to other places that grow mustard seeds, destra? sì. Ma c'è un problema…
2. The other top mustard seed exporters happen to be *squints at notes* Ukraine and Russia. Who are, sai, a little preoccupied.
It’s really hard to substitute the taste of mustard. People are trying all kinds of concoctions with tahini, wasabi and horseradish. It’s pretty grim.
But there’s a silver lining: The Canadian agriculture ministry is predicting better yields for the coming harvest, which should help get production back up to normal.
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