It doesn’t take an expert economist to notice that everything seems to be getting more expensive. From gas to electricity to rent, Americans can barely catch a break from increasing expenses. As we hurtle towards 2017, it looks like prices at the grocery store are going to tick upward as well, Mental Floss reports.
According to a report by the USDA’s Economic Research Service (ERS), analysts predict costs to go up in a few major categories over the course of 2017. While the price increases in some cases may only be 1 or 2 percent, in the long run, those differences can really add up. Here are the main products to be mindful of this upcoming year.
Although beef and veal prices were 7.7 percent lower this past July than they were at the same time last year, ERS researchers expect prices to bounce back with a 2 to 3 percent increase in 2017. Declining American beef exports, greater supply, and weaker demand have all contributed to lower beef prices (thanks, #MeatlessMonday!) Starting in 2017, however, analysts expect other countries to increase demand for U.S. beef, causing an overall spike in prices.
It seems 2017 is going to be a tough year for meat eaters. While chicken prices have followed a trend similar to beef’s, the ERS expects the cost of poultry to jump by 1.5 to 2.5 percent this coming year. That’s an average increase of 6 cents per pound, according to Mental Floss.
Although retail egg prices took a big hit over the summer, dropping 29 percent below July 2015 averages, chicken eggs are one of the most volatile grocery items on the market. Seasonal demand typically dictates price fluctuations, and with a recent HPAI outbreak calming down among U.S. flocks, the ERS forecasts a price increase of 1 to 2 percent by next year.
Moving on in the animal products category, dairy prices could experience an increase of 1.5 to 2.5 percent next year. Dairy prices have been lower this year thanks to expanded cattle grazing, but you can expect that to change as dairy imports decline and the market stabilizes.
Pack in all the peanut butter you can before the year ends because by next year, guys: prices are expected to go up by 1.5 to 2.5 percent.
It’ll be a little trickier to quench your appetite for fresh fruit this upcoming winter season as the ERS expects prices to surpass this year’s steep prices by another 1 to 2 percent in 2017.
Header Photo by Kevin O’Mara