Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Lavender Chatter—What Factors Truly Impact Essential Oil Cost?

With recent industry chatter and inquiries about increasing Bulgarian Lavender prices possibly being imminent we wanted to address the topic of Lavender essential oil availability world-wide and share what we are “hearing,” from folks literally out in the field.  

 While we are on this topic, it might be important to share what factors influence cost in general.  
First, our long-time French supplier indicates many French oils and French Lavender may be in much shorter supply than usual  thus driving up the prices…this situation arising from the impact of 2017 severe drought conditions in France.  However, he stresses it is too early to know for certain what will happen, but he knows the prices will sharply increase. He just isn't sure how much.  I have ordered anyway.  We will see what it costs when he invoices me.

Secondly, our Bulgarian supplier has not indicated anything but a very small cost increase for Bulgarian Lavender for this season's crop.  They are telling us not to expect anything huge. Rest assured we are keeping our ears to the ground! (This year our price increased slightly, but not painfully.)

A problem more widespread than crop failures due to drought or flooding that will certainly increase prices across the board is the rising exchange rate.  Realizing most folks don’t have to even think about exchange rates rising and falling but it does affect the price of essential oils you purchase.  

As an example, at Nature’s Gift we have already seen an escalation of about .25 cents per Euro and the rate is still rising. Last year when I ordered from my favorite French supplier we paid $1.10 per Euro versus $1.36 per Euro this past week, which will result in a 25% cost increase across the board just to bring in European oils this season, regardless of any other situation impacting cost. I see no reason to believe that the exchange rates will decline in the immediate future. As international importers, we are dependent on favorable exchange rates. Every time I look, they have climbed a bit more.

While it makes sense to order what you think you will need of any oil that may face a shortage or price increase, one thing we won’t tolerate is a hoarding mentality.  We are restricting our supply of Fragonia™ so everyone will have access.  Even with our pleas and requests and policy in place, some individuals have decided the policy applies to everyone but themselves.  So, we are monitoring these purchases and will cancel any order that violates the policy by ordering more bulk Fragonia ™ than we have deemed appropriate. We want to be fair to all. It is our prerogative.
We may have to extend the limitations to our current supplies of Lavender, expecially since, based on Industry chatter, our Organic Bulgarian Lavender remains a bargain.

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