A Huge 80% Of The World’s Vanilla Comes From One Island

Chuck Banner | June 24th, 2018

One island grows about 80% of the world’s vanilla supply and that makes vanilla even more valuable than silver. When vanilla prices go up, you suddenly know that Madagascar is having a bad time. Whenever they get hit by some cyclones and storms together with a drought year, suddenly the price of vanilla can go up. And that is because Madagascar is where 80% of the world’s vanilla supply comes from.

livemint.com

When vanilla farmers in Madagascar are unable to harvest their crop then it disrupts the whole chain of supply. Massive multinational companies can no longer get their flavoring into fudge or vanilla ice cream.

It really is an interest storing when you look into how one island completely dominated the vanilla trade, in fact, because of this it has made plain vanilla more costly than one kilogram of silver. What makes it even more interesting is when you learn vanilla is not even native to Madagascar, the main source is from the Vanilla orchid and that plant is actually native to Mexico.

But it was unable to grow anywhere in Europe as the main pollinator is the Melipona bee who only lives in Mexico. Vanilla was in desperate demand though, everyone wanted its subtle taste, so Europeans attempted to grow it everywhere. Finally, a breakthrough happened on the island of Reunion in 1841: hand pollination. Madagascar being a bigger island was able to implement the technique and start mass production.

And they have stayed at the top of the game ever since, one of the only places where laborious hand pollination is actually cost-effective. Countries like India have tried to get into the vanilla growing industry but the volatile international price keeps farmers away from the crop. Sometimes ice cream parlors in Madagascar are losing money with every scoop.

But with the demand for natural flavors returning and society starting to shun artificial flavorings, the vanilla crop is ready for another boom with Madagascar prone to play a big part in this.

Next Article
  • Only One Person Has Ever Been Cured Of HIV

    Timothy Ray Brown known as the Berlin patient is the only known person to have been cured. The problem is no doctors actually know what part of the treatment cured him. In 2007 this was a real disappointment when doctors finally cured HIV but had no idea how they did it. And it took them...

    Read More
  • The Rock of Guatape

    In the Colombian department of Antioquia lodged between the towns of Guatape and El Penol you will find an enormous boulder known as The Rock Of Guatape. Or if you are from Penol, then you may refer to it as the Rock of Penol - just depends on which town you are from. [caption id="attachment_7956"...

    Read More
  • Pig Farmers Say Marijuana Pig Feed Is Better

    Some farmers have a very interesting take on the progression of growing cannabis and the growing legalization of marijuana around the United States. Many believe it is the perfect crop to be commercialized and used in their animal feed - too keep them happy and relaxed! And well if you...

    Read More
  • Telegraph Invented Due To Heartbreak

    The inventor of the telegraph Samuel Morse had quite a tough life that was filled with numerous disappointments and this may really have been one of the reasons he ended up inventing the telegraph. Samuel Morse was born 225 years ago and is known around the world for having invented...

    Read More
  • Colorful Honey Created Naturally By Candy Eating Bees

    A couple of beekeepers in northeastern France were left scratching their heads in confusion when their bees started to produce thick blue and green honey completely naturally. The bees from their hives were found producing honey in odd shades of blue and green - something that was completely unheard of and never seen before. [caption...

    Read More
  • The Sheepdogs That Protect The Little Penguins

    On an Australian Island, there was a strong and vibrant colony of little penguins - that was until the foxes came and nearly ate them all up. Luckily for the little penguins they had a farmer on their side who decided to come up with an amazing way to protect them, in fact, it is...

    Read More
  • The Grueling Gaokao Exam Is The Toughest In The World

    China’s college entrance exam known as the Gaokao is thought to be one of the toughest examinations in the whole world. If you want a spot in one of the 2,200 Chinese universities then you need to ace your Gaokao exam. And it goes much deeper than that, sure the exam decides the university ranking...

    Read More
  • Tiny Sweat Bees Will Try To Feed Off Your Tears

    Recently doctors treating a Taiwanese woman for a swollen eye were shocked to find that she had over four little bees living in her, under her eyelid and feeding off her tears. These tiny little bees are known as sweat bees and are only around 3 millimeters long, so are small enough to fit under...

    Read More