Why The Price Of Dark Chocolate May Rise Slower Than Other Treats

The New York Times states that inflation hit 8.5% in March, increasing at a higher rate than Americans have seen since 1981. Folks are feeling pain at the pump and the grocery store, but analysts are hopeful that soaring prices have peaked and the cost of some goods will start to decrease. The Wall Street Journal offers a silver (or rather chocolate) lining, as it highlights one food commodity that has been seeing a much slower increase in price compared to other foods: cocoa.

Prices have been slowly climbing since the onset of the pandemic due to a variety of reasons, but when Russia invaded Ukraine in February, the cost of gas and food began increasing at a rapid click. Wheat, which is exported by both countries, has seen a 150% price increase since the start of the pandemic; commodities like Arabica coffee have posted a whopping 140% price hike; but cocoa has remained stable, with costs increasing by only 18% despite supply chain issues.

Dark chocolate may offer the best price

Though the cost of cocoa hasn't jumped as high as other food commodities, this doesn't mean all chocolate will remain affordable. The Wall Street Journal explains consumers may want to consider opting for dark chocolate over other varieties, as the cost of milk and sugar have both seen a meteoric rise. Those are of course two of the primary ingredients in sweeter confections like milk chocolate, but dark chocolate is made with more cocoa, and there is plenty of the stuff to meet demand. This also means that — barring any future cocoa market disruptions – consumers might see companies pushing dark chocolate goodies in the coming months as it is better for their bottom line.

In addition to potentially sparing your wallet, Well + Good notes that cocoa contains phytonutrients, which have beneficial antioxidant effects. The higher the cocoa percentage in a chocolate bar, the more phytonutrients it contains, so it may be wise to choose the dark stuff, even if the price doesn't accurately reflect the money the company is saving on your purchase.