Retail food prices moderate

Created: 1/05/12 (Thu) | Topic: Education

Retail food prices at the supermarket declined slightly during the fourth quarter of 2011, according to the latest American Farm Bureau Federation Marketbasket Survey.

The informal survey shows the total cost of 16 food items that can be used to prepare one or more meals was $49.23, down $3.89 or about 7 percent compared to the third quarter of 2011.

Of the 16 items surveyed, 14 decreased and two increased in average price compared to the prior quarter. The overall basket of foods was up about 5 percent compared to one year ago.

“Since about the last quarter of 2010, we have seen consistently higher prices quarter-to-quarter on a broad range of marketbasket items,” said AFBF Senior Economist John Anderson. “With this survey, that trend appears to have reversed. While the marketbasket price was still higher year-over-year, the pull-back from recent highs on most of the items in the basket suggests that food price inflation is slowing down substantially.”

Meat and dairy products accounted for about half of the quarter-to-quarter retail price decrease. Sliced deli ham decreased 74 cents to $4.69 per pound, shredded cheddar decreased 38 cents to $4.32 per pound, bacon decreased 36 cents to $4.05 per pound, sirloin tip roast dropped 13 cents to $4.15 per pound, ground chuck dropped 10 cents to $3.17 per pound, boneless chicken breasts decreased 9 cents to $3.24 per pound and eggs dropped 6 cents to $1.72 for one dozen.

Read the entire news release from AFBF here.

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