We have been hearing a lot of talk about the marked increases in grocery store prices that have been anticipated. It was to be a catch-up, so to speak, for increases that stores have absorbed over the last year or so of the current recession. Well, sadly, our reprieve is up; the price increases have begun to come home to roost. A shopping trip for groceries and daily supplies in the Bristol area reiterates the situation, and we are probably just at the tip of the iceberg.
Chicken salad sandwich and a cup of coffee?
Coffee prices have been inching up for several months, but they are now at ridiculous levels. A container of Maxwell House at Walgreens on West State Street in Bristol will cost you well over $14.00! Hellman’s Mayonnaise was $6.99 on sale! The regular price was over seven dollars–for mayonnaise!
A stop at Krogers in Bristol surprises a shopper with a little brick of store brand cream cheese now costing $1.77. They do have a better price on Maxwell House Coffee at $8.99, but Folgers Classic, the choice of many coffee lovers, is $11.49. If a shopper can settle for the Kroger store brand, that coffee will run them $7.89. The sugar to go in that coffee has gone up from $1.99 to $2.30.
Potatoes and bannanas are ridiculous, although bannanas have been inching up for months. Potatoes are now well over $4.00 for a 5 lb. bag! Some of these prices on produce might be explained with weather abnormalities, but just the same, the price is going up.
Less for Less
The packaging has been progressively getting smaller; this was a documented way that manufacturers of food items avoided raising prices. However, as former Bristol resident Margie Puckett says,
Have you noticed that bottled or canned stuff is in smaller containers for higher prices?
Betty Necessary of Kingsport has seen a noticeable price increase at Ingles in Kingsport:canned goods had gone up 12 cents a can.
It will creep up on ya’!
The odd thing about the price increases is that a customer just suddenly happens upon an increased price all of a sudden, like the store is easing them in little by little. Walking through the store, a price increase just slaps you in the face as you reach for the familiar item on the shelf. The stores say that they have eaten the increased costs for long enough.
It is probably going to change the way we shop, eat, and cook here in Bristol and everywhere. Stay tuned for recipes for very economical meals to serve your family. We are already seeing Internet sites featuring meals for less than five dollars, but we may have to edit those to account for the increased prices!