Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “crunch”

crunch

noun [C, usually singular]     /krʌnʃ/
a situation in which there is not enough of something: Humanity is heading for an energy crunch within a very few years.a crunch happens/occurs The crunch occurred because irresponsible lending led to a huge debt bubble. If we want to avoid a recurrence of this present crunch, we need to understand why it happened. Numerous agencies are starting to feel the crunch from operating for four months at or below last year's levels. → See also cash crunch, credit crunch
if/when it comes to the crunch when a situation becomes extremely serious and a decision must be made: If it comes to the crunch, we'll have no alternative but to sell up.
(Definition of crunch noun from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
Focus on the pronunciation of crunch

Browse related topics

You are looking at an entry to do with Biting, chewing & swallowing, but you might be interested in these topics from the Eating and feeding topic area:

Definitions of “crunch” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

workmanship

the skill with which something was made or done

Word of the Day

Blog

Read our blog about how the English language behaves.

Learn More

New Words

Find words and meanings that have just started to be used in English, and let us know what you think of them.

Learn More