Going to the grocery store isn’t getting any cheaper.
Rising food costs helped push inflation higher again last month, despite a drop in gas prices. The food index alone rose 11.4% over the past year, according to the latest consumer price index figures — marking the biggest 12-month jump since May 1979.
The food-at-home index, a measure of price changes at the grocery store, increased 13.5% — also a 43-year high.
In the face of higher prices, consumers have been cutting back, according to Mark Hamrick, a senior economic analyst at Bankrate.com. However, “food, at its basic level, is not discretionary,” he said. “That’s the challenging aspect of the circumstances we are in.”
Prices for staples like eggs, milk, cereal, bread and butter notched some of the largest increases, further straining household budgets.
Inflation has also led many food and beverage companies, including Coca-Cola and PepsiCo, to raise the prices on drinks and packaged goods. Some are also making their packages smaller — also known as “shrinkflation” — or swap in less expensive ingredients, a tactic now termed “skimpflation.”
This article originally appeared here and was republished with permission.