The Real Reason Your Oat Milk May Soon Be More Expensive

Supply chain issues are continuing to disrupt the lives of people across the country. As CNN points out, this issue affects everyone, especially the most financially vulnerable. The problem has only grown in size, meaning more and more Americans may have to confront the rising price of food. Back in October 2021, times looked like they could get worse for the oat industry. Gro Intelligence reported that extreme droughts across North America put a major dent in the region's production of oats. America lost 40% of this staple, while Canada fared even worse. The Great White North supplies the most amount of oats to the world, but over the course of last year, the industry diminished by 44% and its stockpiles of the grain fell to the smallest amount ever.

The ramifications of this shortage has rippled through the food industry and it looks like shoppers might truly feel the crunch in the coming days, especially for those who buy alternatives to dairy milk. Food Dive reported on March 25 that the combination of crop hardships and transportation issues have created a perfect storm that should put oat milk fans on edge.

The future of oat milk prices

According to Food Dive, rail lines responsible for moving the oat supply got hit by severe rain at the end of 2021, leading to even greater delays and resulting price crunches. On the plus side, representatives for these lines of transportation have come forward and reassured the public that despite some setbacks, goods like oats have been packed up and are ready to move once the weather improves. As a result, brands like Oatly still plan to "meet its growth expectations for 2022," but not everything looks perfect.

The alt-milk brand, which saw a massive boom during the pandemic, has had to scale back its plans due to the lack of oats and the underlying transportation problems, which has made it hard to keep up with the spike in demand. Food Dive notes that its stocks have currently fallen by 80%. This all goes to say that if you love oat milk from Oatly, prepare to really feel it in your wallet this year. With any luck, these transportation problems may come to an end, but you still might have to contend with oat supply problems if you love this type of plant milk.