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Vanilla prices are coming down

noboundaries

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I've been tracking vanilla prices since last October. October is the harvest season and the one good thing about 2020 was a bumper crop of vanilla beans.

I buy my vanilla beans from saffron.com and make my own vanilla extract (it's so easy). Last October a pound of beans was $190, still too rich for me. I checked 5/07/2021 and the price has dropped to $155 per pound. When I get down to about 500 ml left, I'll pull the trigger on another pound. Hopefully, by then, the price will have dropped a little more.

If interested in making your own extract, here's a link to a thread on how to do it.
 

noboundaries

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Yep, expensive. Buuuut, consider the price per ounce of commercial grade to homemade, which I make more vanilla-dense as the store-bought stuff.

Locally, about the cheapest pure vanilla extract runs about $4.50 an ounce. With a pound of vanilla beans I can make 133 ounces of pure vanilla extract. The commercial equivalent of $600 if bought by the ounce. With about $20 of cheap vodka, my cost is a LOT less. (Neutral spirit vodka is an entirely different discussion).

There are a lot of imitation vanillas that are a lot cheaper. If you want to be grossed out beyond anything you ever could imagine, Google "where does imitation vanilla come from." You've been warned.

If you like to use vanilla freely when baking, or to use for gifts, the current pound price of $155 + $20 is pretty cheap, but I'll still wait for another bulk price drop.

Happy baking!

Ray
 

Fueling Around

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Great post Ray.
We use so little vanilla that little bottle we purchase lasts many years.
Cheap vodka tastes cheap. The best lower priced vodka I found is the Kirkland label at Costco.

Interesting side post. The flecks you look for in premium ice cream is often not actually vanilla bean.
 

noboundaries

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Interesting side post. The flecks you look for in premium ice cream is often not actually vanilla bean.
I know. Lots of homemade vanilla extract makers recharge their beans with additional vodka to extend their vanilla life. Once I empty a bottle, though, I pulverize the beans in a blender, adding just enough vodka so they shred into tiny fibers. Those are the flecks in my baked goods, ice cream, and milkshakes.
 

SmokinAl

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I just made a carrot cake for Mother’s Day for Judy & had to use 4 tsp of pure vanilla extract. Well of course I only had 3 so she went to the store & bought a small bottle. The price is outrageous, but she picked up a couple of bottles of wine for herself, & a bottle of Vodka for me, so it was a good trip!!
Al
 

noboundaries

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After several years of high-priced vanilla beans, it's going to take a little while for vanilla extract suppliers to exhaust their expensive inventories. Once that's done, the bumper crop should drive a huge drop in extract prices.
 

Fueling Around

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After several years of high-priced vanilla beans, it's going to take a little while for vanilla extract suppliers to exhaust their expensive inventories. Once that's done, the bumper crop should drive a huge drop in extract prices.
Should is a dream that away after last November.
 

1MoreFord

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For you lazy souls like me who want a decent, decently priced vanilla try the Tones at Sam's Club. Not much more than the tiny bottles at the grocery and better to my taste buds.
 

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