According to the BBC, Ferrero buys a quarter of the world's hazelnuts every year to meet its Nutella manufacturing needs. Mental Floss says this amounts to more than 100,000 tons. On the Nutella website, Ferrero writes that he gets these hazelnuts from Turkey, Italy and Chile. They are harvested from the beginning of August to the end of September in the Northern Hemisphere; to always have fresh hazelnuts, Ferrero now also comes from the Southern Hemisphere, where the harvest is from February to March.
NPR reported that Nutella is responsible for making hazelnuts such a trendy crop and therefore driving up prices. According to Healthline, adding hazelnuts to the diet can improve heart health, prevent oxidative stress and lower blood sugar levels. Approximately 75% of the world's supply of hazelnuts is grown in Turkey, and a third of that amount comes from the incredibly lush green hills of Ordu. In Europe, most hazelnuts are imported from Turkey and Italy, although the plant grows in subalpine areas of Germany and is a popular shrub in gardens.
Hazelnuts grown in Giresun province are considered to be the best in the world in terms of quality, flavor and aroma, said Kubilay Yaman, an international nut and seed broker based there. Ferrero is the world's largest consumer of hazelnuts; the company uses approximately a quarter of the world's hazelnuts. JSTOR adds that, in addition to humans enjoying walnuts, birds, wild boars and other mammals feasted on hazelnuts in the Mesolithic era. In addition, the export of hazelnuts from the United States is increasing competition, with Italian exports likely to increase.
Turkey continues to dominate the global hazelnut industry and, overall, produces about 75 percent of the world's total. Scientists are working to increase domestic hazelnut production by crossing European hazelnuts with native varieties to create a commercial-grade variety that is resistant to diseases and can thrive when planted in the United States (through the Arbor Day Foundation). Although hazelnut-based treats, such as Nutella, are fun to eat, Medical News Today recommends avoiding them when focusing on hazelnuts for health because of their high sugar content. Now, people in places where hazelnuts have never been cultivated before, such as New Jersey, are trying to grow these valuable nuts ready for Nutella.
In the future, part of hazelnut production may be distributed across the country, but for now, Oregon remains the king of hazelnuts in the United States. Its plant in Turkey has a multi-level production plant with an annual cracking and processing capacity of about 35,000 tons of hazelnuts. When you combine hazelnuts and chocolate into a creamy, luscious cream, it may come as no surprise that you have a worldwide phenomenon on your hands and in your bread, waffles, strawberries and crepes.