Every day we're asked why Vanilla prices are so high. Eater.com wrote a good article explaining what's been happening over the years.
"Craig Nielsen, VP of sustainability at Nielsen-Massey, which has been in the business of making vanilla since 1907, says his company does not expect a change in price anytime soon. Vanilla plants take about three years to mature and produce beans. When the cyclone hit this spring, it tore through the main vanilla-growing areas in Madagascar, known as the SAVA region. Not only were crops devastated, but the surrounding trees, essential to filter sunlight and diffuse the heat hitting the vanilla vines, were also decimated. This means future crops may also be damaged or die from the stress of too much sun."