Weather causing food price increases

AGAWAM, Mass. (WWLP) – If you feel like your grocery bill just keeps going up, you can place some of the blame on the weather.

Droughts in California have caused farmers to lose their harvest, and forced some ranchers to sell off their stock.

Rose Piler of Agawam told 22News that she has been noticing things getting more expensive.

“Bread and the fruits, everything’s high, but we have to buy it you know, because we have to eat,”  Pilier said. She told 22News that she and her husband try to shop on days when supermarkets offer deals and discounts to keep their bill down.

The cost of ground beef has increased eight cents per pound since October, and it’s anticipated that it could soon rise to four dollars per pound.

Extreme cold and heavy snowfall this winter season has slowed movement of bulk commodities, like oats.

The price of oats has gone up about 20% this year alone, and when the price of oats goes up, so does the price of things that use it as their main ingredient, like cereal.

Milk prices have also gone up 13 cents per gallon in the last five months.

With all these increases, the typical American can expect to see their grocery bill rise about 5% this year.

Tom Scavotto, the Manager of Geissler’s Supermarket in Agawam, told 22News that price jumps in produce and meat are typical for winter, and his customers know this season has been particularly bad, so they’re expecting it when they get to the register.

“The prices have gone up a little bit, but you know, if you shop the sales and the specials, you’ll be alright,” Scavotto said.

A drought hitting Brazil has also forced coffee prices to spike 35% since November.

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