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.READ MORE: James Michael Tyler, Who Played Gunther On 'Friends,' Dies
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.READ MORE: 'That Was The Worst Thing Imaginable' Shares Vanessa Bryant On Deaths Of Kobe, Daughter Gianna
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.MORE NEWS: Man In His 20s Dies Hours After Being Shot In Long Beach; Motive Unknown
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.