Whether you call it a “cookout”, “grilling”, or a “barbeque”, cooking over an outside fire with family and friends on Independence Day is an American tradition. Every year the American Farm Bureau tracks how much the July 4th Cookout family gettogether is going to cost and it’s no surprise that the cost is up this year. But what may be a surprise is how much it is up! According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), annual inflation is 8.6%. But according to the Farm Bureau survey the cost of your July 4th Cookout will cost you 17% more in 2022.
It is always nice when we can get some independent data on prices. Every year Farm Bureau enlists volunteers from around the country to submit the cost of the annual barbeque ingredients. They then average all the prices to compare with the July 4th Cookout results from previous years. This is very similar to the process used by the BLS (although the BLS does it on a larger scale.)
This year according to Farm Bureau calculations, it will cost almost $70 to feed 10 people which is a 17% increase over last year’s numbers.
According to Farm Bureau Averages:
- 2 pounds of ground beef, $11.12 (+36%)
- 2 pounds of boneless, skinless chicken breasts, $8.99 (+33%)
- 32 ounces of pork & beans, $2.53 (+33%)
- 3 pounds of center-cut pork chops, $15.26 (+31%)
- 2.5 quarts of fresh-squeezed lemonade, $4.43 (+22%)
- 2.5 pounds of homemade potato salad, $3.27 (+19%)
- 8 hamburger buns, $1.93 (+16%)
- Half-gallon of vanilla ice cream, $5.16 (+10%)
- 13-ounce bag of chocolate chip cookies, $4.31 (+7%)
- 2 pints of strawberries, $4.44 (-16%)
- 1 pound of sliced cheese, $3.53 (-13%)
- 16-ounce bag of potato chips, $4.71 (-4%)
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics
Overall, Meat, Poultry, Fish, and Eggs are only supposed to be up by 14.2% not the 31 – 36% the Farm Bureau found.
The BLS says:
- Ground beef +13.6%
- Pork Chops +11%
- Chicken up 17.4%
The BLS says Cereal and Bakery products are up 11.9%… less than the 16% Farm Bureau found on their hamburger buns.
- Fresh biscuits, rolls, muffins, +9.7%
- Cookies +12.6%
- Ice Cream +9.6%
- Citrus Fruits (for Lemonade) +16.1%
- Potatoes +8.6%
- Cheese +8.7%
- Snacks +13.6%
- Prepared Salads 11.5%
- Fresh Fruits +8.5%
So other than Fruit and cheese it certainly looks like the Bureau of Labor Statistics is underestimating food inflation by more than 50%! I’m also wondering where they found a half-gallon of Ice Cream? They used to sell it that way i.e. 64 fl. oz. (a half-gallon) but now it is only 48 fl. oz. Supposedly, the BLS adjusts for this kind of thing.
- Inflation Takes a Bite Out of Your Food Budget
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- Worldwide Inflation by Country 2022
- Roots of Our Current Inflation
- Food Price Inflation Since 1913
- What is Core Inflation and Why Doesn’t It Include Food and Energy?
- Cost of Living: How Much of Your Budget Goes to Food?
- Cost of Living- Real Basket of Goods
- Its Weight in Gold: The Real Prices of Things
- Cost of Living
- Cost of Living- Fish and Chips
You can read the original Farm Bureau article here.