Inflation becomes the latest impact of the pandemic to the American economy, following the hardships suffered by the labor sector on layoffs and furloughs, ABC7 reported.
In September, the Consumer Price Index skyrocketed to 5.4 percent with food prices as the key driver of the notable jump. Pockets of consumers at grocery stores and meat markets are lifting the burden of high costs especially on beef and chicken.
Have costs been bad as compared to the present? Bob Strupeni, who has been a butcher for more than four decades, said: “No, I’ve never seen it like this in all the years I’ve been doing this.”
Recently, San Mateo’s Piazza meat manager saw the prices of beef increase from $3 to $4 per pound. The prices of meat have increased by 12 percent across the nation in the past year.
“I’ve noticed some of the trend of hamburgers and lower cut meats are selling a little more than usual, but that’s understandable,” he said.
The usual budget-friendly chicken has also increased in prices.
Chico’s Taqueria in San Mateo owner Francisco Ayala said beef took over the chicken’s place as the top seller, as its prices jumped.
“Chicken is overpriced,” Ayala said. “We used to pay $40, 50 bucks. Now it’s $100 a case.”
But beef prices are not spared from the increase, which now sells for $400 from $200 for a pot of birria.
The increase in the prices had consumers like Nancy Graham feeling the weight of costly grocery bills.
“Double from the last two weeks.” The jump of prices “…changes some of my menu. That’s what I thought I was going to buy, then I look at it. It was $12, now it’s $24.”
Part of the blame for the increase on prices goes to shipping costs.
“They’ve gone I’ve heard anywhere from $7,000 to $15,000 for the same container to ship things from overseas,” Piazza’s store manager David Pinochi said.