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'Definitely Cutting Back A Lot': Inflation Has Consumer Prices Up 8.5% In March

MILTON (CBS) – Inflation is soaring at the fasting pace in forty years. Consumers are feeling the pressure. First at the gas pump and now at the supermarket.

Many families can barely keep up.

"It's extremely hard," Danielle Cenci told WBZ-TV. "Definitely cutting back a lot shopping for a family – we have two children. It's been very difficult."

The consumer price index reached 8.5% with necessities like food, gasoline, and housing seeing the sharpest increase in March -- the highest it has been since 1981.

"I suppose it's less money to save," said one shopper in Milton.

From snacks to poultry, the owner of Fruit Center Marketplace said the price of just about everything has gone up – thanks in part to fuel costs.

"It's just really hard to get and source product so, therefore, prices rise. Combine that with the energy increase, fuel increases," owner Mike Mignosa said. "We get those increases, we have to go up in price and ultimately, the consumer suffers the consequences and has to pay those higher prices."

It's forcing many families to budget more wisely. Cenci said she's cutting back on driving and dining out.

WBZ reporter Tiffany Chan asked her how she's balancing the rising costs. Cenci said she is "not going out to dinner as much. I guess not driving as much."

Boston College economics professor Peter Ireland believes the market will eventually stabilize in the coming months.

"I would hope that as we move into summer and fall that things will die down a bit," he said.

EMERGENCY COMPONENT - LOCAL

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