The State of Vanilla: Challenges and Opportunities

“Madagascar produces 80% of the global [supply] for vanilla,” says Scott May, Givaudan’s global head of sweet goods and dairy. In light of such a fi gure, it is easy to see how even isolated regional events can have debilitating effects on a global scale. Yet, while Madagascar’s current political crisis is a cause for concern, most experts agree market diffi culties will stem from economic and environmental factors. Of the political upheaval, Rick Brownell, vice president of vanilla products for Virginia Dare, notes, “Shipments of vanilla beans within the country can be disrupted. Exports are also often delayed. But, longer term, I believe the impact will be relatively minor.”

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