Ice has quickly turned into a precious commodity in Spain this summer

Spanish shops ration out ice cubes in the midst of heatwave

Spanish shops ration out ice cubes in the midst of heatwave

The country may run out of this common frozen product before the end of the summer

Spanish supermarkets have started rationing the sale of bagged ice cubes in the midst of what has turned out to be a ‘perfect storm’ of calamities: ongoing heatwaves and soaring energy prices. The combination of these two factors has brought in a surge in demand for the basic frozen commodity, so much so that production can’t keep up.

Neighbouring Portugal still manages to meet demand

The Iberian Peninsula is experiencing its third consecutive, and very severe, heatwave this summer, and the weather phenomenon is straining daily life there in more ways than one. The latest trouble is an acute shortage of ice, causing some Spanish supermarkets, such as Consum, to declare that each customer can only buy two bags.

Ice production, in order to meet the usual summer demand, begins in the early months of the year, but the increase in electricity prices generated manufacturing and storage costs that led to the shutdown of factories.

The demands, generated by the heatwaves, caused the prices of ice bags to rise but the bigger problem is that the cubes that were already produced and stored earlier in the year have already run out. Current production rates simply can’t keep up with the supply, according to various media sources. The grim outlook is that before the end of the summer Spain will run out of ice.

This is bad news for consumers, who apart from having to battle the heatwaves now may have to consider ice cubes as part of their basic provision pantry, together with bread and cooking oil, which have also become more costly.

Meanwhile, The Portugal News has reported that in Portugal, which has also suffered from the heatwave effects, the situation is not as tragic. Local supermarkets there have also reported a significant increase in demand for ice purchases, but rationing is not on the cards. At least, not yet.



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