UPDATE1 Are Food Prices Falling In Your Area?by Tim Manni
The BBC has been monitoring food prices around the globe for the past year in order to develop their World Food Price Index. The index records the price fluctuations of the five staple foods from seven cities around the world.
In the U.S., the BBC has been documenting the prices at Washington D.C.’s Safeway supermarket:
We look at the price of potatoes, eggs, meat, bread and milk, and we found that at this shop, at least, prices of these goods fell on average by 17% in the past year.
Since this is only one store in one city, we want to know if food prices are falling in your part of the country.
Prices are Flat or Falling for the Same Reason
That reason is the recession. Large supermarket chains have the ability to lower some of their prices more than smaller, more localized food stores. The ongoing recession in the U.S. is certainly one of the reasons prices are falling, since stores realize that the way to attract customers away from the competition is to lower their prices.
However, some stores haven’t lowered their prices simply because they can’t afford to:
[Tom Calamaris] runs a small fruit and vegetable stall at Eastern Market in Washington DC and says his business is really being squeezed by the big supermarkets bringing prices down – something he has not been able to afford to do.
“I just can’t do that,” he says, “I know a lot of the big businesses can because they make millions of dollars.”
Admitting he cannot compete, he warns, “Mama and Pop businesses go out of business because the big businesses swallow them up.”
Update1: For more information on falling prices in the U.S., read the blog post “Things are getting cheaper: how and why?” from our friends at www.JustThrive.com.