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Risk of shortage: could mustard soon become more difficult to find in France?


While many general food items are currently under stress, mustard could add to the list of harder-to-find foods. Several factors explain this situation.

Shortage of sunflower oil, rising egg prices and pressure on mustard production… mayonnaise could well become a luxury product! While inflation and the war in Ukraine are causing supply difficulties for certain products, notably cereals, other factors explain the tensions experienced by the mustard sector.

Drought in Canada and war in Ukraine

And this tension already seems to be reflected on the shelves since in this Drôme intermarché, Le Dauphiné Libéré has noticed an absence of mustard pots for a month and a half now.

Already in December, French manufacturers feared a shortage. In question, the drought that hit Canada, the main exporter of mustard seeds. At that time, BFM business explained that “Canada foresees a drastic drop of 28% by July 2022 and a rationalization of its exports”.

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Already in 2021, the profession was therefore expecting a sharp rise in prices. But that was without counting on the arrival of the war in Ukraine, which aggravated the crisis a little more. L’Ukraine is indeed also a major exporter of mustard seeds and the 2022 harvest is suffering the horrors of the conflict with Russia.

Packaging issues

In the Tribune, the general manager of Reine de Dijon in Burgundy, expresses his concern. “This third seed supplier would have allowed us to make the joint between October and November 2022 and continue to deliver our mustards, based on our emergency seeds”.

Beyond the issues of raw material supply, mustard manufacturers are also suffering from the soaring price of glass and metal, necessary to package the products. As a result, if the mustard does not yet run out, its price may well rise rapidly.

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