Smooth Or Crunchy, Peanut Butter Will Cost More

Heat and drought in Texas and the Southeast did a number on this year's peanut crop. Because of that, peanut butter prices are expected to rise by about 30 percent next month.

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And for today's last word in business, we move from breakfast to lunch, the meal at which you are most likely to eat a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Peanut butter prices are about to go up. Heat and drought in Texas and the Southeast did a number on this year's peanut crop. Reports this week say companies like J.M. Smucker, maker of Jiff, will raise prices about 30 percent next month. Other brands may hike prices up to 40 percent.

Patrick Archer, the president of the American Peanut Council, says that might affect sales, but his product, he argues, is still a bargain.

PATRICK ARCHER: Now, even so, peanuts remain an economical healthy source of protein that kids and a lot of us adults really love.

INSKEEP: And cheaper than the alternative, which might explain why since the beginning of the economic downturn there's been more demand for peanut butter. The Department of Agriculture says peanut butter consumption has gone up 10 percent since 2008. In a nutshell, that's the business news on MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

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