MEMPHIS — Lallemand/American Yeast on Nov. 28 announced plans to raise its yeast prices as much as 16% in the United States and Canada, effective Dec. 28 or as current contracts expire.

Lallemand said the increases will range from 10% to 16%, depending on geographic market, brackets and terms.

Prices for compressed yeast will rise by at least 5c per lb, liquid yeast by at least 3c a lb (on an “as is” basis) and dried yeast by at least 15c per lb.

The company said it was reviewing order minimums, lead times and fuel charges, also to reflect changing cost factors.

“Most of the commodities and ingredients that make up yeast’s product costs have risen significantly in the past year,” said Gary Edwards, president. “For example, corn is 17% higher and diesel fuel is 30% higher. The increases have already eroded the margins to be the minimum necessary to justify the investments made over the years and to guarantee top quality product and service levels.

“Taxes, employee related health insurance costs and wastewater treatment costs are also driving production costs up, and the pressure of added regulations on transport costs are also contributing to the problem. Although we continue to seek to compensation for such pressures by improving productivity, there is a limit to what we are able to sustain without increasing our prices.”