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There is no denying that China has had a huge impact on the price of pecans, both on the farm and on the shelf, however this year is a little different. The price of pecans on the grocery store shelf has not changed much, but the price of pecans on the farm has dropped significantly. With China largely sitting out of the US pecan market, both pecan growers and pecan buyers are experiencing a far more bearish market reminiscent of pecan markets of two decades ago. While China’s pecan purchasing fluctuated from year to year, by in large pecan exports to China have continued to increase year over year. This resulted in a far more robust competitive pecan market not controlled by a few large US shellers. But alas a trade war has disrupted the single largest buyer of in-shell pecans, China, and pecan growers are right back to begging shellers to buy their pecans. While it’s true, shellers need the pecans to fill contractors throughout the year, they don’t need to buy them now. Imports from Mexico continue to allow shellers to purchase cheaper pecans while playing the two suppliers against each other in a game as old as the pecan industry itself. Growers in the pecan industry will hopefully use this year as a wake up call to realize that you can not ask a buyer to speculate, finance, store, shell, market and deliver your product, and give you the lion’s share of the profit, it just doesn’t work.