Organic wheat prices remain stable, and after briefly rising in tandem with conventional prices, organic feed wheat has moved back in line at a discount to organic corn prices. Organic milling wheat prices remain stable, but merchandisers are telling The Jacobsen that most consumers of organic milling wheat are covered for the Q1. This comes despite a continued increase in demand for organic flour, as at-home baking returns after taking a hiatus during the summer.
At-Home Baking is Rising
During the first wave of the pandemic, baking was all the rage. It was nearly impossible to purchase flour and baking powder at a supermarket, big-box stores, or online during the spring. During the first 4-months of the pandemic, organic flour sales rose 134% year over year according to The Jacobsen. Non-GMO flour sales were also very robust. They increase 94% year over year compared to the same period in 2019.
This compared to a 45% increase in conventional flour sales. During the summer of 2020, as the spread of the virus eased, at-home baking slowed but was still higher year over year. The second wave has led to a rise in demand for baking goods, and ahead of the holiday, it appears that organic flour sales are on the rise again.
Consumer Confidence Slid
Ahead of the holiday season, which unofficially kicks off on Friday, November 27, 2020 (Black Friday), consumer confidence appears to be slipping. According to the Conference Board, consumers’ economic outlook slid in November as coronavirus cases soared across the country. The Conference Board reported that its index of consumer confidence fell to 96.1 in November, from a revised 101.4 in October. Expectations were for consumer confidence to slide to 98.0. It appears that the levels of consumer confidence are negatively correlated to the sales of organic flour. The dip in confidence during the period March through June came as organic flour sales hit multi-year highs. The uptick in confidence during the summer reflected a corresponding dip in organic flour sales.
Note. There will be no daily analysis this Friday November 27, 2020