Posted by YerbaJon on February 13, 2014
For a couple of years now, struggling families in Argentina have had to endure the painful increase in the cost of basic food staples. The cost of basic staples like eggs, flour, and yerba mate have fallen victim to the hyper-inflation; As high as 25% inflation per year has walloped Latin America’s largest yerba mate producer. Worse, the inability to have yerba mate in the family budget is not just a “luxury” as we might consider it in North America. For Argentinian’s, yerba mate's nutrient rich preparation is a fundamental source of some of the most important vitamins and minerals that humans need for health; struggling families can’t cut yerba mate out of the budget without cutting out life sustaining nutrients.
...Graciela Flores said soaring yerba costs were more bad news for her weekly budget: "I'm paying double for yerba now..." (from 'Tea price spike brews Argentina inflation fears')
Oh, it gets worse. Sigh. The price increase on yerba mate is not just from inflation, as there is an unprecedented shortage of yerba mate. Hyper-inflation and increased yerba mate demand have combined to further raise the cost of drinking yerba mate. In the end, yerba mate prices have steadily risen for yerba mate drinkers all over the world, and we have not been spared. The rising yerba mate prices began over two years ago and show no current sign of slowing down. In fact, it is getting intensely worse. According to the most recent data released just yesterday, Argentina experienced a record 5.5% inflation in just one month. Worse, the crisis is spreading and impacting yerba mate produced in neighboring countries. Canarias yerba mate from Uruguay, for example, has recently gone up by over 30%. It is easy for me to become annoyed at the rising cost of my favorite drink, but I am pained more by the impact this must be having on already struggling families in Argentina. Ugh.