US drought and crop losses will raise the price of altar breads

Being from the upper midwest, I have seen the devastation of the crops this year.  In many places there are total losses.

From CNA:

Greenville, R.I., Aug 26, 2012 / 01:09 pm (CNA).- Manufacturers of altar bread are preparing to face rising costs of wheat flour as grain prices fluctuate in the wake of a severe drought that continues to plague the Midwest and Western Canada, although they expect to pass along only a minimal price increase to their customers.

In Clyde, Mo., Benedictine Sister Rita Claire Dohn, manager of the altar bread ministry of the Benedictine Sisters of Perpetual Adoration, has witnessed a 25 percent increase in the price of wheat flour since the convent last received a delivery two months ago.

“That’s pretty steep when there isn’t a large profit margin,” Sister Dohn emphasized, adding that the convent is the largest religious producer of altar breads in the world. The sisters offer their altar breads wholesale to many smaller convents that resell the life-giving breads to support their community.

“You have to be competitive,” she continued, noting that the sisters are being cautious and have yet to increase the prices of their goods.

She added that the sisters will “hold off as long as possible,” on passing on to their customers any price increases. In addition to making altar bread, the 52-member community is supported by the sale of liturgical vestments and gourmet popcorn.


I know of a couple convents of sisters who earn their groceries by making hosts. They may be in trouble for a while.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

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  1. Scarltherr says:

    We will pay whatever it costs. There can be no haggling over the Eucharist.

  2. CarpeNoctem says:

    I support the Clyde sisters, buy their altar breads for my parish, have seen their ‘factory’, and will also pay whatever it costs.

  3. nykash says:

    My wife loves popcorn… I might have to order some from the sisters. The ‘White Truffle Oil and Pink Himalayan Sea Salt’ sounds like a winner. Yes, perhaps a little over the top, but so is chocolate, imho.

  4. whitej30 says:

    Maybe it’s time for all sides to start taking a second look at the science behind global warming, and start discussing the environmental teachings from the Catechism and Social Compendium.

  5. jeffreyquick says:

    Wheat is a fairly small part of the cost of a commercial loaf of bread. There’s less of it in a Host. If the sisters are essentially donating their labor, prices will have to rise. We’ll deal. It’s not like the “finished product” came cheap, either.

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