Here’s yet another reason to forgo meat once, twice, or three times a week: The most recent onslaught of bad weather in the Midwest is being blamed for a reduction in the region’s corn crop. This isn’t going to mean fewer tacos and nachos in your future, it means a higher cost for all types of meat. Much of the corn grown in the U.S. is used for bio-energy and livestock feed. Experts predict that the national corn shortage could cause meat prices to rise 7 percent or more this year. Other forces—from oil prices and overall energy costs to marketing and storage—are also responsible for food price increases.
Recently the American Farm Bureau Federation released its report on the prices of 16 foods commonly used to prepare meals. Use this list to choose economically when deciding what to make for dinner.
The Bad News: 14 Items Increased in Price
Sirloin tip roast, up 52 cents to $4.48 per pound
Russet potatoes, up 43 cents to $3.07 for a 5-pound bag
Sliced deli ham, up 35 cents to $5.26 per pound
Bacon, up 32 cents to $4.18 per pound
Ground chuck, up 19 cents to $3.29 per pound
Whole milk, up 16 cents to $3.62 per gallon
Vegetable oil, up 13 cents to $3.01 for a 32-ounce bottle
Toasted oat cereal, up 12 cents to $3.17 for a 9-ounce box
Apples, up 11 cents to $1.56 per pound
Orange juice, up 4 cents to $3.18 for a half-gallon
Eggs, up 3 cents to $1.65 per dozen
Bread, up 2 cents to $1.86 for a 20-ounce loaf
Bagged salad, up 1 cent to $2.67 per pound
Flour, up 1 cent to $2.52 for a 5-pound bag
The Good News: 2 Items Decreased in Price
Boneless chicken breasts, down 23 cents to $3.09 per pound
Shredded cheese, down 7 cents to $4.56 per pound.