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Why Is the Cost of Beef so High Right Now?

Summer is coming and that means people will be looking to cook out, but the cost of beef is making it more likely that chicken or pork is what will wind up on the grill.

Cost of beef hit record numbers in February - photo courtesy of Imgur

Cost of beef hit record numbers in February – photo courtesy of Imgur

Beef is at it’s highest price in nearly three decades. The current national average was $5.28 a pound for the month of February, which is 24 cents higher than it was in January.

The cause for this price spike is mostly due to high demand from foreign countries such as Japan and China. This growing export is causing the domestic supplies to dwindle and American consumers are going to pay the price as a result.

With the growing foreign demand, domestic cattle farmers herds are thin and will need time to rebuild them. This means that prices will likely remain high for at least a couple of years while the supply is rebuilt.

Not only will consumers be effected on their trips to the grocery stores but businesses too will be paying for the current high cost of beef. Restaurant owners can buy in bulk to try and help deal with the price increase, but it is possible the the restaurants will have to pass the additional costs onto their customer base.

These are the highest prices that consumers have had to pay for beef since 1987.

“Everything that’s produced is being consumed,” said Kevin Good, an analyst at CattleFax, a Colorado-based information group.

Why Is the Cost of Beef so High Right Now?

 

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