Prices are spiking — and not just because people are buying more groceries as they spend more time at home.
From February to June, meat and poultry prices rose nearly 11%, with beef and veal prices seeing the highest rise, spiking 20%. For pork the increase was about 8.5%. People are paying more for other staples, too: During the same time period, egg prices shot up 10%, and shoppers shelled out 4% more for cereals and fresh vegetables.
The pandemic has caused a surge in demand for groceries as millions of Americans stay home and avoid eating out. While there’s no significant shortage of food, disruptions in the supply chain have created scarcities and driven up prices.
The higher expenditures come at a time when many Americans are struggling financially.
On Thursday, the Department of Labor will release data that is expected to show that another 1.4 million workers filed for first-time unemployment benefits last week, which is similar to the prior week’s statistics. Meanwhile, unemployed Americans are losing a financial lifeline, as the government’s weekly $600 boost to regular jobless benefits ran out on July 31.
— CNN’s Tami Luhby and Dakin Andone contributed to this report.