Hurricanes cause pecan shortage, drive up prices

- They are as Texas as you can get. The pecan tree is our state tree, but pecans themselves are getting hard to come by in this corner of the Lone Star State.

Just ask harvesters like Raymond Licjs. He does it as a side job for extra cash.

"It's a drop this year. There’s not as many pecans as there were the years before. It is a drought out there.," he says.

It's actually not a drought, just the opposite according to the owner of Bagley's Pecans in Richmond.

"It's pretty bad because of the multiple challenges that we've been having... That have been going on. It's probably the worst we've ever seen," said Dalia White.

She says Hurricane Harvey in Texas and Hurricane Irma in Georgia destroyed a lot of the crop. Georgia lost as much as 35 percent. Texas may have lost as much as 3 million pounds worth. Toss in a freeze as well and the net result? Prices on the rise.

Don't expect the prices to come crashing to the ground anytime soon. There's another thing driving up prices -- the Chinese. They've discovered the nut. They love them and they are buying all they can. If the Chinese love affair continues, they could end up planting their own orchards, but for now the demand is strong and steady.

That doesn't bother James Scott. He's already got his.

"To eat them... I just eat them like they are. No pies? No pies. Nothing just like they are."

This is Texas and he's free to eat them any way he wants. It's not like there’s a law about it or anything. But no pecan pie? Seriously?   

If you want to get some pecans you might want to check out the annual Pecan Harvest Festival of Richmond on the November 19 in the Historic District of Richmond.

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