Peek into the Spice Trade

... and a few other articles on cooking with spices!

COVID Market update: agar agar and cardamom

agar agar cardamom market news

COVID-19 repercussions are now finally starting to stabilize: all of our supplier's are back to normal production, most lockdowns in the world are now over / planned... the only problem is the massive hike in shipping / freight charges, which have resulted in a huge spike in food costs around the world, spices not being much of an exception. Whereas we used to pay an average of around HKD10,000 for shipping a container across the world for years, recently this has become closer to HKD30,000 for the same thing (coming to HK) and we consider ourselves lucky... outbound containers from...

Read more →

Covid market update: Ceylon Cinnamon, Paprika, Garlic, Sesame

cinnamon garlic market news paprika white sesame

COVID-19 effects have started to wane - with the world starting to get vaccinated, and most governments easing up lockdown restrictions, work has started to resume in our industry.   Ceylon Cinnamon pricing is down severely - like most luxury items, demand is short, and sellers are keen to offload goods. At the same time, more unscrupulous sellers have started trying to ship inferior quality ceylon cinnamon (near tasteless sticks) after extracting out flavours. It is a new challenge in a marketplace that once used to have very high ethical standards.    Paprika, Garlic, Sesame and other chinese products prices are on the rise. With chinese...

Read more →

Covid market update: Saffron, Pinenut

market news pinenuts saffron

COVID-19 effects have now begun to affect international shipping lines - reports are that between 400,000-500,000 sailors have been stranded due to COVID-19. Either having caught the virus, or due to original lack of cargo leaving them stranded on another location, or problems at their country of origin / ports of transit not letting them disembark, and later a huge need for goods like masks and protective equipment shipping out of China... as a result there is now a severe lack of ships for transportation of goods between the rest of world, and prices for shipping have increased TENFOLD since...

Read more →

Covid market update: Star Anise, Allspice

allspice market news star anise

COVID-19 effects are finally dissipating as most of the world is in a recovery mode and lockdowns in producing nations have all begun to end. While pricing has gone up dramatically for a few ingredients, in general pricing is starting to come down for Indian spices as well as dry fruits and nuts from the US.  Extremely poor harvesting during spring crop has made Star Anise's autumn crop very expensive and all old batch (low priced) goods are quickly getting bought up. Unfortunately due to Covid-19, this problem was unavoidable as most of China was in lockdown during most of the key harvest...

Read more →

Covid market update: Almonds, Cardamom, Chillies

almonds cardamom chillies market news

COVID-19 effects are still affecting the global spice trade, and coupled with various numbers of trade disputes involving India, China, USA, Australia and other parts of the world, Hong Kong is stuck in the centre, making negotations, and international shipping very difficult. Fortunately, supply in production has resumed for almost the entire world and prices are starting to stablise again for most herbs and spices. Almond nut prices have started to drop following the lead of other nuts. Consumption for these nuts has fallen a lot - as traditional use in Asia and middle east is for gifts and celebrations, all...

Read more →