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Chilean Criminals Have Turned to Avocado Theft, And Who Can Blame Them

"Yes, I know guac is extra"

Avocados, the lynchpin of millennial criticism, are proving that everyone wants a piece of the hottest food trend of the 21st century.

Chile, one of the biggest exporters of avocados, is benefiting from increased demand. Specifically, the prices of avocados have grown 23% in the past year, and 9% in the past month. Sadly, these price increases haven't come without repercussions

While thefts have always existed, it has gone from people breaking into fields at night to organized armed groups assaulting producers in broad daylight, said Francisco Contardo, general manager of Chile’s avocado producers’ association. During the harvest season, from August to February this year, 10 bands were dismantled and 50 people were charged with theft.

Now Chile has copied the avocado police of Mexico and California’s “guac cops,” so-called because of guacamole, appointing its first avocado-focused prosecutor to address rising theft.

Everyone has been trying to get in on the avocado boom since it first took off in the early '10s. It started off slowly before guacamole gained real footing in the hors-d'oeuvres market. And as society realized that millennials had finally struck gold with avocados, the movement slowly blossomed into full-blown avocado restaurants in the biggest cities all across America.

Truly a beautiful tale of growth and success.

The organized criminals are just trying to get in on the best thing to happen to breakfast since Waffle House dropped the hit single, "Raisins in My Toast." As demand continues to grow for avocados, this is simply too good of an opportunity for organized criminals to pass up. Also, if you've ever had avocado toast, then it's fair to assume the criminals are just trying to up their breakfast game.

The avocado will continue to grow as it follows in the footsteps of the tech field and expands into the Chinese marketplace.

While Europe is still Chile’s largest exporting market, with almost half of the country’s production shipped there during the last season, producers are turning their eyes to China. About 10 percent of Chilean avocado exports were shipped there in the last season after local producers launched campaigns to present the product in six different cities.

The producers’ association estimates that Chinese demand will be about 60,000 tons in coming years. About a third of that could come from Chile, according to a publication by the World Avocado Association.

People complain about millennials and their trends, but it appears they have struck gold when it comes to avocados.

Avocado Toast Is Sparking a Chilean Crime Wave [Bloomberg]


Photo: Bob Riha Jr/Getty Images

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