A lot of families have a tradition of going out and getting an authentic Christmas tree every holiday season. But the festive trees were victim to rising prices, similar to a lot of other items this year, and it doesn’t look like it’s going to let up.
According to Ron Macedo of Turlock’s RAM Farms, the price of trees this year has gone up by eight percent, and 50 percent over the last nine years. This year’s increases can be attributed to the wildfires in Oregon, which is where most sellers get their product on the west coast. The supply chain crisis has also made less fertilizer available to growers, which has also led to higher prices.
“I’ve been hearing about the prices from people,” said Macedo. “There’s always going to be a market for people that want real a Christmas tree, but artificial trees are becoming more popular.”
At RAM Farms a seven-foot tree is priced at $110 and 12-14 footers can range from $300-$400. For the larger trees, that accounts for over $30 more than last season.
While the prices may be rising, the demand from retail sellers isn’t going away. Macedo said his grower told him ‘If you don’t want them Ron, I got a stack of business cards this big.’
Another element that could be contributing to rising prices is less land to grow trees. According to Macedo, other plants and grains, like cannabis and oats, have become popular to grow in Oregon and growers have less real estate than they used to.
Even with the increase in prices, Macedo believes he is going to sell about the same number of trees as last year.
“I’ve got about seven hundred trees which is about where we were last year,” he said. “We’re on pace to do what we did last year. I actually wanted to get more and I’m glad I didn’t.”
Local sellers like RAM Farms have to be smart with the number of trees they purchase, because after the holiday season, the trees lose their value.
“I have to keep the ones we don’t sell, so I’m happy with the pace we’re on right now,” said Macedo. “It’s not like pumpkins, I could grow those and sell them whenever.”