Avocados Are Burning

Southern California’s fires may be mostly tamed, but freak-outery rages on. “Holy Guacamole!” wailed one NBC headline. “Third of California Avocados Gone!”

Emergency officials say 20,000 acres of avocado trees in northern San Diego County have been lost [due to fire], at least a third of the state’s crop, with another 15,000 acres threatened by flames.

‘The avocados are going to be over $1.50 a piece—around $2—because there’s going to be a very high demand on avocados,’ San Jose produce stand owner Nader Mechel said.

Not so, soothes the California Avocado Commission. The industry group believes these numbers are an “exaggeration,” and predicts this year’s harvest will be just 10 percent less than last year’s.

Meanwhile, the California Farm Bureau Federation says that California could still have an average-size crop this season. It was supposed to be a bumper crop of avos this year, and knocking it back by 10 percent or so should bring the total harvest to roughly normal levels.

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