Wrigley Gum Heir’s Porsche and a Pristine Ferrari Spyder to Highlight Miami Car Auction - Kanebridge News
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Wrigley Gum Heir’s Porsche and a Pristine Ferrari Spyder to Highlight Miami Car Auction

By Jim Motavalli
Wed, Feb 14, 2024 8:59amGrey Clock 5 min

An exceptionally rare 1967 Ferrari 365 California Spyder by Pininfarina, the ninth of just 14 built, will highlight an auction of classic cars and other vehicles in Miami next month.

RM Sotheby’s will conduct a two-day auction from March 1-2 with 119 motor vehicle lots at the first ModaMiami extravaganza. On offer will be boats, motorcycles, and a plane, too.

The Spyder is in exceptionally original condition, with certification from Ferrari Classiche that it retains its matching-numbers chassis, engine, transmission, rear axle, and body. The car is chassis number 9935, completed in May 1967 and in the hands of two long-term owners (four owners total). It was specified with China Red paint and a white-leather interior that matched the Los Angeles-based first owner Nancy Tewksbury’s 275 GTS. The coachbuilt car was bought by Donald Grove, a Princeton physicist, in 1971. Grove restored the car and kept it for 27 years. The Spyder is estimated to achieve between US$4 million and US$4.5 million.

A 1929 Duesenberg with LeBaron coachwork was originally owned by the man who ran both the Wrigley’s gum company and the Chicago Cubs.x
RM Sotheby’s

Another notable car at the auction will be a 1929 Duesenberg Model J “Sweep Panel” dual-cowl phaeton with coachwork by LeBaron. The car’s original owner was Phillip K. Wrigley, who took over the famous chewing gum company (and the Chicago Cubs) from his father, William Wrigley, Jr. The younger Wrigley traveled to the Duesenberg factory in Indiana to see his car being built. It is chassis 2177 with engine J-121, originally with a Murphy body.

After a year and 10,400 miles, Wrigley decided he preferred the dual-cowl LeBaron phaeton body on a friend’s car better, and so he retained his original chassis but swapped on the LeBaron body. It was the kind of thing that was possible on cars with body-on-frame construction. The Duesenberg is estimated to achieve between US$2.65 million and US$2.85 million.

This 1966 Porsche 906 Carrera S achieved more class wins than any other 906.
RM Sotheby’s

From the racing side of things comes a 1966 Porsche 906 Carrera S with competition history, initially driven by first owner Josef “Sepp” Greger. The car ran to victory in the two-litre class at the European Hillclimb Championship in 1966 and the European Mountain Championship in 1968. Under new owners, it competed in other German races in 1971 and 1972, then went to Macau, where it also raced but did not finish. It took part in some 80 races (achieving more class wins than any other 906) and was even used briefly as a road car. Under New York owner Jean Goutal, who bought the car in 2003, it was finally fully restored by Porsche racing specialist Kevin Jeanette’s Gunnar Racing. After three years of work, the Carrera is now virtually as-delivered, with many period details. The estimate is between US$1.8 million and US$2.8 million.

Fancy a very original Cobra? This 1964 289 example has never been crashed or extensively modified.
RM Sotheby’s

Other special cars in the RM Sotheby’s Miami auction include:

— The 1964 289-powered Mark II AC Cobra is a late production model with rack-and-pinion steering and a pair of dual-barrel carburetors from the factory. The car retains its original engine, which offers 271 horsepower. Originally sold in Illinois and then Ohio, the car was on the cover of the first Cobra World Registry in 1974. The Cobra was repainted in the 1980s in its current classic blue with white stripes. After extensive service in 2022 by Cobra specialist Rare Drive in New Hampshire (including a rebuild of the brakes and suspension) it is ready for the road. The car has never been in an accident or had extensive modifications. It’s estimated at US$1.1 million to US$1.3 million.

— The 1929 De Havilland DH60GM Gipsy Moth is a restored airplane from the early days of aviation that was used in the making of the 1985 hit film Out of Africa. In keeping with that history, the plane’s sale benefits a rhinoceros sanctuary in Kenya. This all-metal Gipsy Moth was built under a De Havilland license in the U.S. in 1929. It was then shipped to the UK, where it was eventually registered G-AAMY to celebrate the career of British aviatrix Amy Johnson, the first woman to fly solo from England to Australia in her own Gipsy Moth. In 1985, the plane was dismantled and shipped in two crates to Nairobi by way of Germany. It subsequently appeared in numerous scenes in Out of Africa , which starred Meryl Streep and Robert Redford and is based on the 1937 autobiography of that name by Isak Dinesen (a pseudonym for Karen Blixen). The plane has been regularly maintained and now has an uprated De Havilland Gypsy II engine that makes 135 horsepower, and is said to be eminently air-worthy. The plane is projected to bring US$140,000 to US$220,000.

Very few of these 27-foot 1941 Chris-Craft Model 115 Custom Runabouts were built, and “Runaway Jane” is the only survivor from that year. RM Sotheby’s
RM Sotheby’s

— The 27-foot 1941 Chris-Craft Model 115 Custom Runabout “Runaway Jane” is the only survivor of three of these triple-cockpit wooden boats built that year. It was restored by Michigan experts in 2002 and has been sympathetically maintained since then. Power now comes from an 8.2-liter Mercruiser V8 with more than 300 horsepower, considerably enlivening the original performance. Only 62 examples of this 27-foot craft were built over a 10-year period.The low estimate is US$175,000 and the high US$225,000.

A star of the hit film Out of Africa was this 1929 De Havilland DH60GM Gipsy Moth airplane
RM Sotheby’s

There are, of course, many other vehicles being sold, including a series of BMW M cars, and classic Mercedes, including examples of the 540K, the 770K, and the 300SL.



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Some chocolatiers and coffee makers say they will have to pass on the extra cost to consumers

By JOSEPH HOPPE
Sun, Apr 14, 2024 4 min

Global prices for cocoa and coffee are surging as severe weather events hamper production in key regions, raising questions from farm to table over the long-term damage climate change could have on soft commodities.

Cultivating cocoa and coffee requires very specific temperature, water and soil conditions. Now, more frequent heat waves, heavy rainfalls and droughts are damaging harvests and crippling supplies amid ever growing demand from customers worldwide.

“Adverse weather conditions, mostly in the Southern Hemisphere, have played an important role in sending several food commodities sharply higher,” said Ole Hansen , head of commodity strategy at Saxo Bank.

The spikes in prices are a threat to coffee and chocolate makers across the globe.

Swiss consumer-goods giant Nestlé was able to pass only a fraction of the cocoa price increase to customers last year, and it may need to adjust pricing in the future due to persistently high prices, a spokesperson said.

Italian coffee maker Lavazza reported revenue of more than $3 billion for last year, but said profitability was hit by soaring coffee bean prices, particularly for green and Robusta coffee, and its decision to limit price increases.

Likewise, chocolatier Chocoladefabriken Lindt & Spruengli said in its 2023 results that weather and climate conditions played a major role in the global shortage of cocoa beans that led to historically high prices. The company had to lift the sales prices of its products and said it would need to further raise them this year and next if cocoa prices remain at current levels.

Hershey ’s chief executive, Michele Buck , said in February that historic cocoa prices are expected to limit earnings growth this year, and that the company plans to use “every tool in its toolbox,” including price hikes, to manage the impact on business.

In West Africa, where about 70% of global cocoa is produced, powerhouses Ivory Coast and Ghana are facing catastrophic harvests this season as El Niño—the pattern of above-average sea surface temperatures—led to unseasonal heavy rainfalls followed by strong heat waves.

Extreme heat has weakened cocoa trees already damaged from heavy rainfall at the end of last year, according to Morningstar DBRS’s Aarti Magan and Moritz Steinbauer. The rain also worsened road conditions, disrupting cocoa bean deliveries to export ports.

The International Cocoa Organization—a global body composed of cocoa producing and consuming member countries—said in its latest monthly report that it expects the global supply deficit to widen to 374,000 metric tons in the 2023-24 season, from 74,000 tons last season. Global cocoa supply is anticipated to decline by almost 11% to 4.449 million tons when compared with 2022-23.

“Significant declines in production are expected from the top producing countries as they are envisaged to feel the detrimental effect of unfavourable weather conditions and diseases,” the organisation said.

While the effects of climate change are severe, other serious structural issues are also hitting West African cocoa production in the short- to medium-term. Illegal mining poses a significant threat to cocoa farms in Ghana, destroying arable land and poisoning water supplies, and the problem is becoming increasingly relevant in the Ivory Coast, according to BMI.

The issues are being magnified by deforestation carried out to increase cocoa production. Since 1950, Ivory Coast has lost around 90% of its forests, while Ghana has lost around 65% over the same period. This has driven farmers to areas less suited to cocoa cultivation like grasslands, increasing the amount of labor required and bringing further downside risks to the harvest, the research firm said.

The Ivory Coast’s cocoa mid-crop harvest—which officially starts in April and runs until September—is expected to fall to 400,000-500,000 tons from 600,000-620,000 tons last year, with weather expected to play a crucial role in shaping the market balance for the season, ING analysts said, citing estimates from the country’s cocoa regulator. Ghana’s cocoa board also forecasts a slump in the harvest for this season to as low as 422,500 tons, the poorest in more than 20 years, according to BMI.

Neither regulator responded to a request for comment.

Meanwhile, extreme droughts in Southeast Asia—particularly in Vietnam and Indonesia—are resulting in lower coffee bean harvests, hurting producers’ output and global exports. Coffee inventories have recovered somewhat in recent weeks but remain low in recent historical terms. Robusta coffee has seen a severe deterioration in export expectations, while Arabica coffee is expected to return to a relatively narrow surplus this year, said Charles Hart, senior commodities analyst at BMI.

The global coffee benchmark prices, London Robusta futures, are up by 15% on-month to $3,825 a ton. Arabica coffee prices have also surged 17% over the last month to $2.16 a pound in lockstep with Robusta—its highest level since October 2022. Cocoa prices have more than tripled on-year over these supply crunch fears, and risen 49% in the last month alone to $10,050 a ton.

“Cocoa trees are particularly sensitive to weather and require very specific conditions to grow, this means that cocoa prices are especially vulnerable to extreme weather events, such as drought and periods of intense heat, as well as the longer-term impact of climate change,” said Lucrezia Cogliati, associate commodities analyst at BMI.

Cogliati said global cocoa consumption is expected to outpace production for the third consecutive season, with intense seasonal West African winds and plant diseases contributing to significant declines.

Consumers hoping for a return to cheaper prices for life’s little luxuries in the midterm may also be in for a bitter surprise.

“There is no sugarcoating it—consumers will ultimately be faced with higher chocolate prices, products that contain less chocolate, and/or shrinking product sizes,” Morningstar’s Magan and Steinbauer said in a report.

“We anticipate consumers could respond by searching widely for promotional discounts, trading down to value-based chocolate and confectionary products from premium products, switching to private-label from branded products and/or reducing volumes altogether.”

The record-breaking rally for cocoa and coffee is likely more than just a flash in the pan, according to Citi analysts, as adverse weather conditions and strong demand trends are likely to support prices in the months ahead. The U.S. bank estimates Arabica coffee futures in a range of $1.88-$2.15 a pound for the current year, but said projections could be lifted if the outlook for 2024-25 tightens further.

At the heart of it all, climate change is set to play a major role, as the impact of extreme weather events could exacerbate the pressure on cocoa and coffee supplies, according to market watchers.

“I don’t expect prices to remain at these levels, but if we continue to see more unusual weather as a result of global warming then we certainly could see more volatility in terms of cocoa yields going forward, which could impact pricing,” said Paul Joules, commodities analyst at Rabobank.