Pumpkin Lovers Can Breathe a Sigh of Relief — Except Here

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Last year's pumpkin shortage is just a bad memory in most places. But don't tell that to customers at Starbucks.

Pumpkin lovers can breathe a sigh of relief this fall. After a pumpkin shortage in 2015 left many Americans scrambling to find enough canned and fresh pumpkin to make pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving, there appears to be no shortage of pumpkins this year.

According to Reuters, the 2016 U.S. pumpkin crop is looking good. Roz O’Hearn, a spokeswoman for Libby’s — which supplies more than 80 percent of U.S. canned pumpkin — tells Reuters:

“We’re rebuilding our inventory right now and as soon as we have enough pumpkin canned we’ll begin releasing the 2016 Libby’s pumpkin to our retail partners. So by end of the month, the 2015 shortage will be behind us.”

In 2015, the U.S. pumpkin harvest totaled a mere 754 million pounds — the smallest pumpkin crop on record, says Reuters.

Although there will likely be enough pumpkin to meet American demand this year, that doesn’t mean the popular Starbucks’ pumpkin spice latte is safe — even though pumpkin is not the main ingredient in the drink.

According to MoneyWatch, “consumers from Vermont to Florida are encountering shortages of Starbucks’ pumpkin spice lattes,” and they’re expressing their disappointment on social media. One PSL-loving consumer wrote on the Starbucks’ Facebook page:

“Our small town Starbucks was out of PSL flavor since the end of August. Haven’t restocked it. And they said they weren’t sure when they will get it in. BAD planning!!!! I’m a diehard Starbucks fan…but will be going to another coffee place this fall!”

But Starbucks says there’s no cause for concern. In an email to MoneyWatch, a Starbucks spokesperson says the coffee chain has enough “pumpkin spice sauce” to go around.

“There may be a store here or there that is out, and if that’s the case, they should get more in a day or so as they would with any product,” the spokesperson explains.

Check out “Why U.S. Pumpkin Sales Plummet, Even as Our Taste for Pumpkin Peaks.”

Are you a pumpkin or pumpkin spice fan? Sound off below or on our Facebook page.

Stacy Johnson

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