Drought may cause U.S. families to spend more on food in 2013
9/13/2012 7:34 AM
The Food Institute reports that food inflation, including the impact of the severe drought in the Midwest, will cost a family of four $351.12 more in food spending in 2013 than in 2012—approximately $6.75 a week. Food-at-home spending will increase about $4.00 a week, and away-from-home spending by about $2.50, according to The Food Institute. These figures are only slightly more than the 2.5–3.5% increase projected by the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture (USDA) for all of this year.
The cost is calculated using the USDA’s latest food price projections for 2013, which indicate prices for food-at-home will increase as much as 4.0% next year, with food away-from-home prices projected to rise as much as 3.5%.
A breakdown by food category shows most of the increase in food-at-home purchases will be experienced at meat counters, where annual costs are seen rising about $44 next year for a family of four, and about $30 for a two-person household, according to The Food Institute's estimates. Beef costs would account for nearly one-third of that increase.
Fresh produce prices will add another $23.44 to a family’s grocery bill next year, but processed fruit and vegetable expenditures should go up only about $11, The Food Institute projects. Canners and freezers may take note of this opportunity to promote their products.
For those eating away-from-home, two-person households will be spending an average $86.73 more next year, with a family of four spending an additional $125.