The cost of beef and pork are the biggest contributors to higher grocery prices this spring. Farm Bureau’s Spring Picnic Marketbasket survey shows that the total cost of 16 food items that can be used to prepare one or more meals was $53.87, up $.60 or about 1 percent compared to a survey conducted a year ago.
“Several meat items increased in price, accounting for much of the modest increase in the marketbasket,” said John Anderson, AFBF’s deputy chief economist. “The 1 percent increase shown by our survey tracks closely with the Agriculture Department’s forecast of 2 percent to 3 percent food inflation for 2015,” he said.
The survey showed that sirloin tip roast was up 14 percent, ground chuck increased by 12 percent, and deli ham edged up 6 percent in price. On the plus side (at least for consumers), prices for bacon and chicken breasts were down 8 and 7 percent, respectively.
Farm Bureau did lament the fact that farmers are seeing less of the food dollar than they used to:
“Through the mid-1970s, farmers received about one-third of consumer retail food expenditures for food eaten at home and away from home, on average. Since then, that figure has decreased steadily and is now about 16 percent, according to the Agriculture Department’s revised Food Dollar Series,” Anderson said.