Corn is embedded in our culture, especially here in the north. For many Belizeans corn, in whatever form, is an ideal companion for breakfast, lunch and dinner. But is seems that many of us, with an increase in the price of corn, will have to forcibly adjust our budget to at least be able to keep part of our culture. On November 27th the price of masa increased to .77 cents per pound. And now the price for a pound of corn tortilla has increased. The increase came into effect on New Years Day when the price for a pound of tortilla went from $1.25 to $1.40 per pound.
At Tortilleria Maya here in Orange Walk, the sign says that effective 1st January 2012, a pound of corn tortilla will be sold at $1.40. When we spoke to the Manager of Tortilleria Maya, Vladimir Torres, he told us off camera that the reason for the increase is due to the recent hike in the price of corn. According to Torres the price for a one hundred pound sack of corn saw an increase of $15.00 as it went from $22.00 to $37.00.
With that, the price for a pound of corn tortilla saw an increase of .15 cents. But if you think that won’t affect your wallet, then think about the ripple effect that the increase will have, let’s say when you go buy tacos, one of Orange Walkenos’s favorite breakfast.
At the moment 3 tacos are sold for $1.00 but according to tacos vendor Maria Diaz, the recent price increase on corn tortilla is hurting her profits.
Maria Diaz, Tacos Vendor
“Pues si me está afectando bastante, porque antes se compraba más barato porque doy el taco a tres por el dólar y ahora estoy viendo cómo puedo hacer para que la bolsa salga menos afectado. No creo dar dos por el dólar sino siempre mantenerlo a tres, también hago empanadas con carne y queso y frijol y la doy a dólar y entonces me va a afectar bastante. Estamos viendo unos momentos muy difíciles y nosotros estamos tratando la manera de sacar adelante el país para que ayudar al pueblo.”
But Maria Diaz is not the only one affected by the price increase. When we spoke to the owner of Mercy’s Place, he told us that increase has also affected his business which uses approximately fifty pounds of corn tortilla per day. Both vendors told us today that they are presently incurring the price increase. CTV3