Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

Help Support EcoWatch

April Grocery Prices Jumped the Most in 46 Years

Food
A shopper wearing a surgical mask and latex gloves inspects a dozen eggs at a Trader Joe's on April 3, 2020 in Brooklyn, New York. Robert Nickelsberg / Getty Images

Not since 1974 have grocery store prices surged 2.6 percent in just one month. That just happened in April, according to new data released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics on Tuesday, as CNBC reported.


Prices Americans paid for eggs, meat, cereal and milk all went higher in April as people flocked to grocery stores to stock up on food amid government lockdowns designed to slow the spread of Covid-19, according to CNBC.

The largest increases were for meat and eggs. Consumers paid 4.3 percent more in April for meats, poultry, fish and eggs, 1.5 percent more for fruits and vegetables, and 2.9 percent more for cereals and bakery products, as well as nonalcoholic beverages, the Labor Department said, as The Washington Post reported.

The rise in food prices adds to worrying news as more than 20 million people joined the ranks of the unemployed and one in five American households experienced food insecurity, according to The Washington Post.

"It's a tipping point for people who are already really struggling with resources," said Geri Henchy, director of nutrition policy for the Food Research & Action Center, to The Washington Post. "Their budgets are taxed and now add increases in the price of food. There's been a big increase in food insecurity, which is twice as bad for people of color and families with young children. People can't go on with those lowered resources forever."

As Business Insider noted, the surge in prices did not come as a shock. Over the past year, the food at home index went up 4.1 percent. In April, the United States Department of Agriculture posted an outlook on food prices that noted that "grocery stores are experiencing increased demand," due to the coronavirus pandemic. Since people are stocking up on food at grocery stores, the "food at home" category grew quickly.

Henchy noted that the jump in cereal and bakery products was the steepest single-month increase on record, which goes back to 1919. She attributes the increase in prices to where people are buying their food and disruptions in supply chains due to outbreaks in meat processing plants and social distancing guidelines, as The Washington Post reported.

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden speaks during a White House Clean Energy Investment Summit on June 16, 2015 in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building in Washington, DC. Alex Wong / Getty Images

By Jake Johnson

With presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden's climate platform becoming increasingly ambitious thanks to nonstop grassroots pressure, fossil fuel executives and lobbyists are pouring money into the coffers of President Donald Trump's reelection campaign in the hopes of keeping an outspoken and dedicated ally of dirty energy in the White House.

Read More Show Less
The Food and Drug Administration is now warning against more than 100 potentially dangerous hand sanitizers.
Antonio_Diaz / Getty Images

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is now warning against more than 100 potentially dangerous hand sanitizers.

Read More Show Less
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo speaks at a news conference on July 1, 2020 in New York City. Byron Smith / Getty Images

While the nation overall struggles with rising COVID cases, New York State is seeing the opposite. After peaking in March and April and implementing strict shutdowns of businesses, the state has seen its number of positive cases steadily decline as it slowly reopens. From coast-to-coast, Governor Andrew Cuomo's response to the crisis has been hailed as an exemplar of how to handle a public health crisis.

Read More Show Less
A whale shark swims in the Egyptian Red Sea. Derek Keats / Wikimedia Commons / CC by 2.0

By Gavin Naylor

Sharks elicit outsized fear, even though the risk of a shark bite is infinitesimally small. As a marine biologist and director of the Florida Program for Shark Research, I oversee the International Shark Attack File – a global record of reported shark bites that has been maintained continuously since 1958.

Read More Show Less
A girl sits under a temporary shade made by joining two bed in Churu, Rajasthan on June 4, 2019. Temperatures in the Indian desert city hit 50 degrees C (122 F) for the second time in three days, sending residents scrambling for shade. MONEY SHARMA / AFP via Getty Images

Current efforts to curb an infectious disease show the potential we have for collective action. That action and more will be needed if we want to stem the coming wave of heat-related deaths that will surpass the number of people who die from all infectious diseases, according to a new study, as The Guardian reported.

Read More Show Less
America Pikas are found from the Sierra Nevada to the Rocky Mountains, and have been migrating to higher elevations. Jon LeVasseur / Flickr / Public Domain

By Jenny Morber

Caribbean corals sprout off Texas. Pacific salmon tour the Canadian Arctic. Peruvian lowland birds nest at higher elevations.

Read More Show Less

Trending

Biologists are studying the impact of climate change on the Nenets and their reindeer herds. Deutsche Welle

Biologist Egor Kirillin is on a special mission. Deep in the Siberian wilderness in the Russian Republic of Sakha, he waits on the Olenjok river until reindeer come thundering into the water.

Read More Show Less