That ain’t a dance move, it’s an economic indicator — a measure of the total volume of cacao ground to powder to meet North American chocolate demand (other parts of the world issue their own quarterly “grindings” reports). The total grind was up 8.25 percent to 131,974 metric tons in the third quarter of this year, and that’s good news for chocolate sellers.
The bad news is that while chocolate demand is increasing, supply is dwindling. A two-year drought in West Africa is causing lower yields. Also cacao growers around the world are continuing to switch over to crops like palm oil and rubber in hopes of making a better living. It doesn’t take an economist to understand that when increasing demand meets decreasing supply you get higher prices, maybe drastically higher prices. So consider yourself warned, chocaholics…lean times may be a-comin’!