Today is Valentine's Day, a day when 70 percent of Americans give chocolates to their loved ones and the nation spends $1.7 billion on confections for the holiday. Are you one of them?
If you're on the giving end or just an all-around lover of chocolate (no judgment, we heart chocolate too), there's some good news this year — along with a little bit of bad news as well.
Which do you want first?
The Good News: Chocolate Prices Are Dropping!
Chocolate-lovers can rejoice knowing that they can eat, binge, hoard, and bathe in chocolate without breaking their banks. Bloomberg reports cocoa growers in Latin America and West Africa — these two regions produce roughly 70 percent of the world's cocoa — are seeing bigger harvests. As such, the cocoa rates are the lowest they've been since 2008.
This good news comes just in time for Valentine's Day but, according to Bloomberg, prices will continue to drop after the holiday as well.
Read the full story: Valentine's Chocolate Gets Cheaper at Cocoa Supply Swells
The Bad News: A Shortage Is Coming
It's hard to say how one year of good harvests will impact the big picture: Experts have warned that there could be a global cocoa shortage by 2020 caused by an array of factors from climate change and crop failure to the rising demand from emerging markets like Brazil, China, and India.
In anticipation, big-brand chocolate makers are dropping some serious cash ($1 billion) to increase output, and scientists have been looking for a solution for the impending cocoa shortage. Last year, a team of researchers came up with one possible alternative: mangoes. The study, which published its findings in journal Scientific Reports, found wild mango butter to be physically and chemically similar to cocoa butter.
Will you stock up on chocolate while the prices are low?