American Farm Bureau Federation: Proteins Lead the Way on Lower Food Prices

Americans should be paying less for groceries, according to survey, but other figures show a rise.

Hard-boiling Easter eggs and grilling a cheeseburger should be a little cheaper this spring, according to American Farm Bureau Federation’s Spring Picnic Marketbasket Survey results released Tuesday.

Lower retail prices for meat, eggs and cheese continue to push down overall food costs, the informal survey shows. In fact, the total cost of 16 foods that can be used to prepare a variety of meals dropped to just over $50. That’s approximately $3.25, or 6 percent, lower than last year. 

AFBF’s most recent Thanksgiving Dinner Price Survey, conducted in November, also found a drop in food prices from the previous year. 

USDA forecast a 1 percent to 2 percent increase in prices for food for this year. And, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, grocery bills have already increased by 2.7 percent, slightly higher than the average rate of inflation over the past 10 years. 

AFBF’s survey found egg prices down sharply (41 percent) from a year ago as well as continued declines in retail prices for beef, chicken, bacon and ham. Toasted oat cereal, flour, apples and potatoes also decreased in price. 

There was no change in price for vegetable oil. 

Several foods showed modest retail price increases from a year ago, including salad, whole milk, white bread and orange juice. 

The survey is based on the shopping experiences of 117 shoppers in 31 states.