People who got an early jump on their Memorial Day barbecue shopping may have noticed something alarming: Prices are up. Way up.
Sticker shock is everywhere, from burgers to buns, from ketchup to mustard. The good news is there’s some price relief at stores now. In the four weeks through May 15, the price per package of ground beef rose 14.7% compared to the previous year, according to the market research firm IRI, which tracked total US multi-outlet retail sales at US supermarkets, big-box retailers, convenience stores and other locations.
Ground beef wasn’t the only item that became more expensive in that time period. The price of frozen meat packages, not including poultry, popped 15.7% while frozen sausages prices jumped 24.4%. Hot dogs got 14.5% pricier. Packaged hamburger and hot dog buns got 11.2% more expensive. Ketchup spiked 15.8%, mustard popped 10.4% and carbonated beverage prices increased 13.9%.
Fresh lettuce prices went up 13.8%, and fresh tomatoes got 4.8% more expensive. Still, the increase shouldn’t come as too much of a shock, as grocery prices have been surging this year. Food prices were 9.4% higher in April 2022 than in April 2021, the largest annual increase in 41 years, the Bureau of Labor Statistics said earlier in May. Grocery prices jumped 10.8% for the year, not adjusting for seasonal swings, according to the BLS report.