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Food Prices Expected To Go Up 3%, The Highest Increase Since 2011

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — Groceries are taking a bigger bite of household budgets these days.

According to Fern's AG Insider, the USDA predicts grocery prices will rise 3% on average this year, the highest increase the U.S. has seen since 2011.

Some Experts Say US Could Face Meat Shortages Within Weeks
WASHINGTON, DC - APRIL 28: A man shops in the meat section at a grocery store, April 28, 2020 Washington, DC. Meat industry experts say that beef, chicken and pork could become scarce in the United States because many meat processing plants have been temporarily closed down due to the coronavirus pandemic. Tyson Foods took out a full page advertisement over the weekend in several major American newspapers, warning that the food supply chain is on the cusp of breaking. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

With so many people working and staying close to home, grocery prices are rising faster than food costs from restaurants and food chains. Since the coronavirus outbreak started in the spring, demand for meat, poultry and fish has been up, and prices for those items are up across the board.

Prices are also up for staples like eggs, bread, dairy items, and fruit and vegetables.

The increase in food prices are largely due to demand, but supply chain problems due to the pandemic have also contributed. Several meat processing plants have been hit by infections and have been forced to shut down or slow production. Farms, including here in Oxnard, have had dozens of workers infected with COVID-19.

The report notes that food prices usually mirror the overall U.S. inflation rate, which is forecast at less than 1% this year, and that it's restaurant and takeout prices that have typically increased at higher rates than grocery prices.

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