Business Insider South Africa reports that the price of butter at supermarket chains has surpassed the price of domestic free-range duck fat. South Africa’s butter shortage does come with a silver lining for fans of this aromatic liquid gold. Previously considered a luxury item with a prohibitive cost, duck fat has gained favor with chefs and home cooks alike as a way to add a rich texture and meaty flavor to roasted vegetables and potatoes.
Milk production in South Africa has declined in the past few years, largely owing to the chronic water shortage that’s been affecting industries across the country, and hobbling its dairy operations since 2016. Butter manufacturing has followed suit, and prices for the kitchen staple have been steadily rising to reflect it. As high-fat diets and butter-based trends take off, the country has begun relying on imported butter from Europe. And local duck fat, of course.