Seeds of change for Dijon mustard in France amid shortage

France’s #1 sauce, Dijon mustard, is difficult to come by nowadays, with signs on grocery store racks cautioning the fortunate rare sorts of people who spot bumps that they can bring one back home.

A heatwave across the sea in Canada, the world’s top mustard-seed maker, is to be faulted for the radical deficiency that has delayed for a really long time in France Canada supplies around 80% of the mustard seeds utilized by French creators of the zesty fixing, the rest coming for the most part from Burgundy, the district that encompasses Dijon. Yet, a dry spell sliced the Canadian gather by half in 2021.

Presently French mustard creators are meaning to support creation at home in Burgundy.

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“It’s vital to expand that offer so we can confront weather conditions gambles with that vary from one country to the next,” Luc Vandermaesen, leader of the Burgundy Mustard Association, an industry bunch, told AFP.

“We can’t tie up our assets in one place,” said Vandermaesen, who is additionally the CEO of France’s third greatest mustard creator, Reine de Dijon (Queen of Dijon).

Twofold the cost

The Dijon area has been well known for its mustard seeds since the Middle Ages, yet creation has been obliterated by bothers as synthetic compounds used to kill them have been prohibited.

Yield was split by three among 2017 and last year, tumbling from 12,000 to 4,000 tons. In June, nearby makers were asked to over two times the region planted with mustard seeds to 10,000 ha.

“The Canadian issues resuscitated the significance of the Burgundy area,” said Fabrice Genin, leader of the Association of Mustard Seeds Producers of Burgundy.

As a motivator, mustard creators consented to pay €2,000 (RM9,035) per ton for Burgundy seeds one year from now, up from €1,300 last year and beyond twofold what they paid in 2021.

The allure seems to have worked, with 10,000 ha anticipated mustard seeds, said Jerome Gervais, a mustard master at the office of horticulture in Burgundy’s Cote d’Or division.

The quantity of seed makers hopped from 160 to more than 500, he added, which is “more than trusted”.


Francois Detain, a rancher in Agencourt, surrendered mustard seed creation in 2019 after his fields were destroyed by a dry spring and a bug pervasion.

In any case, the cost presented for mustard seeds permitted him to bring them back, despite the fact that Russia’s attack of Ukraine has made manures more costly. A drop in the costs of grains and oilseeds has likewise made mustard seeds more alluring.

“It’s kind of a retribution for us to have the option to replant a neighborhood crop,” Detain said.

Transporting costs – which have taken off because of store network bottlenecks since pandemic lockdowns were lifted – have additionally given an edge to Burgundy seeds over those from Canada.

By the following year, Burgundy ought to deliver 15,000 tons of mustard seeds, addressing 40% of the necessities of mustard producers, Gervais said.

Store racks ought to be recharged in October,” Vandermaesen added. “We are exceptionally certain for Christmas.”

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