The Best Condiment Is At All-Time High And Prices Won’t Come Down

Butter prices are at all-time highs and supply chain issues and inflation mean the price isn't coming down anytime soon.

By Trista Sobeck | Published


Yum butter! It’s rich, it’s practically perfect, and makes things taste amazing. But, butter has its downsides. For one, it’s getting hard to find. And for another, prices are up to an all-time high and probably won’t come down. Butter is just another casualty of inflation, climate change, and supply chain issues. 

As you probably are well aware, butter is an animal-based product and we typically get it from cow’s milk. This is the most popular type of butter sold in stores and is primarily used in cooking and baking. When cows are affected by drought, stress, or lack of feed, they are unable to produce milk. Which means, no butter.

According to CNBC, milk production needed to make butter was down 1.4% from the previous year as of January 2022. And experts say that supply chain issues, lack of labor, and financial issues have made it extremely hard to keep and maintain cows. 

After all, keeping living animals, making sure they are fed, and being taken care of ethically is expensive. As of today, it costs about $900/per head, per day. Add this to inflation and lack of workers, and the cost of butter is bound to stay high

Once the price of something that a lot of people use–like gas or eggs–goes up, it’s tough to get it to go back down. Experts say it’s because the supply chain takes a while to catch up. Others say it’s because the market will take what the market will bear. Meaning, if people will pay, you might as well charge. Such is the case with butter. 

This is definitely the case now as we start to get ready for Thanksgiving and Christmas–both big baking holidays that many people refer to as “fat season.” It’s basically that time between Halloween and the New Year when treats, baked pastries, and food in all forms, are staples. If butter isn’t available, that means fewer tasty treats. 

In recent news, Hurricane Ian, which hit landfall earlier this week, will affect food prices in the United States. As Tell Me Best recently reported, Florida is a major supplier of fertilizer used to help make many of our food sources grow. More than likely, this will also affect feed for the cows we need to create butter.

With butter, savvy cooks and bakers know that options are available. Although they may do the job and save some calories, some people swear they can’t go without actual butter. Purists may turn their noses up at subs like avocado oil, coconut oil, and even margarine. But it’s good to know they are available. 

A great hack is using applesauce in lieu of butter. It makes muffins tasty and keeps your waist slim. However, reports are in that other staples and condiments are on the list of hard to find and pricy. In fact, tasty items like Dijon mustard and sriracha chili peppers are becoming rarer. And these don’t have a substitute. 

So, if you go to your family’s house for the holidays and you can’t seem to find those yummy butter cookies your mom always makes. Don’t blame her. She’s trying her best.