Nationwide lettuce shortage impacts businesses in The Valley
Do not be surprised if iceberg and romaine lettuce is out of stock at your favorite food supplier.
John Barker, president and CEO of the Ohio Restaurant Association, says the shortage of leafy greens stems from a parasite wrecking havoc on crops in California.
"It's a virus that's affecting the lettuce and in some cases they think maybe the fields got too wet," Barker said.
Melissa Poland, owner of Sweet Melissa's in Boardman says costs have more than quadrupled for them.
"Back two months ago I was purchasing lettuce from $23.50 all the way up to $32.50 for a case of lettuce and since this all happened out in California, my lettuce price now has jumped to $103 a case," Poland said.
With price spikes and lack of lettuce variety, restaurant officials advise people to eat other vegetables as a substitute.
They're hoping this high cost issue ends in the coming weeks but if not consumers should prepare for a potential increase at the counter at places like Sweet Melissa's.
"The last thing I want to do is raise the price but I'm kind of being forced to do that at this point," Poland said.
Restaurateurs are hoping the new batch of crops from the west coast will provide them relief of this issue.