Food prices in July were up 31 percent from the same month in 2020, according to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization. This rise is fueled by supply chain disruption and extreme weather conditions.
Central banks disregard food and fuel inflation when setting policies as they are the most volatile categories in the typical basket of consumer goods and services. However, these are the first things that come to mind when ordinary people think about inflation.
Shang-Jin Wei, a professor of finance and economics at Columbia Business School, noted that central banks are underestimating the change to take more drastic measures that they themselves are predicting.
Prices for chicken and other proteins have been inflated in the U.S. due to labor shortages at processing plants. Strong demand from at-home cooks is a factor, but restaurant chains are competing in chicken wars. At the same time, the supply has been constrained as farmers scramble to rebuild their flocks – many of which were decimated by winter storms in February.
Middle-class families in the U.S. are not going hungry as food prices rise, but millions of individuals are.
Before the pandemic, about 35 million Americans were already considered food insecure, or lack consistent access to enough food for all the members of a household. Amidst the huge spike of joblessness brought about by the COVID-19 recession, the number jumped to 45 million or more than 13 percent of the population. (Related: Surging food prices force restaurants to increase cost of menu items.)
Analyst: Price increases may continue in next two years
Grocery prices are trending upward the entire year, and steady price increases may be the new normal. Phil Lempert, an analyst and food trends expert, said that people are going to continue seeing price increases in the next two years or so.
In the decade before the pandemic, year-over-year price increases have been around 1 percent for food at home. Meaning, July’s 2.6 percent increase is more than double of what people are accustomed to.
In many cases, these price increases are probably overdue.
Agricultural commodity prices have been on the rise in the past year due to the conditions surrounding the growing season and the buying trends. For example, China is buying raw commodities such as soy to be used as animal feed. Pork and chicken prices are also on the rise as raising animals continue to become more expensive.
The raw price of producing crops and animals on the farm is only a fraction of the total cost consumers pay, but energy, transportation and labor costs also factor in. All of those aspects have seen rise in costs. Gasoline prices have risen 41.8 percent since July 2020 and there are not enough truck drivers to transport food.
Labor costs also play a role. Wages have been increasing in both food processing and retail, adding to the end cost for consumers. “It’s probably the case that if we want the kind of labor that we’ve come to expect in the foodservice sector and food processing, then [employers] are probably going to have to pay a little more,” Lempert said.
Consumers on a tight budget are now considering spending more time shopping around and looking through weekly ads to compare prices. Drugstores, for instance, have milk typically priced cheaper than supermarkets.
More and more consumers are also switching to less expensive products to keep food budget on track. Grocery delivery services are now being avoided as customers have to pay additional delivery charges, fees and tips. Oftentimes, items are also priced higher in grocery delivery services than on physical shelves in the store.
Learn more about food prices at Food.news.
The Dangers of Speaking the Truth Diminish If We Work Together
It’s becoming harder and harder for patriots to ignore the deep suppression of truth that’s happening in America today.
In all of my years in journalism, I have never received as many threats or been attacked by big companies like Google and Facebook as I have in 2021. I’d say that ever since we started covering widespread voter fraud, government-endorsed Pandemic Panic Theater, vaccine cover-ups, Critical Race Theory, and the various Neo-Marxist and Satanic agendas at play, I’ve been targeted more in months than the entirety of my life prior.
Speaking the truth is getting harder with so much censorship and suppression rampant. Prior to 2020, I was not a “conspiracy theorist” or an “anti-vaxxer,” but if there’s one thing the onslaught of exposed lies have taught us in the last 18 months, it’s that we cannot take what we’re told by the “arbiters of truth” at face value. There’s an agenda behind every message, a narrative driving every story, and a series of gigantic cover-ups designed to keep the masses in the dark.
This is why we’re building a network of news outlets that are willing to go against the narrative and expose the truth. We need help. We’re establishing strong partnerships with like-minded news outlets and courageous journalists. Even as Big Tech suppresses us, the honest messages they’re trying to quash are finding their way to the eyes and ears of patriots across the nation. With the help of new content partners like The Epoch Times and The Liberty Daily, we’re starting to see a real impact.
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I’ve said much of this before. From time to time I reframe this request for assistance by taking the most relevant message of the day and adjusting the story accordingly. We’ve discussed this network in previous articles. Now, it’s time to talk about help. First and foremost, we need financial assistance detailed below. But we could also use more writers who are willing to volunteer their thoughts for the sake of spreading the message. Those who are interested should contact me directly.
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