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grocery prices
Old 04-16-2020, 11:18 AM
  #1

I have been "shopping" online almost daily to see if my grocery has released any cleaning products for purchase. I have noticed the prices of many grocery items have been inching up. The store brand shredded cheese which I buy regularly for $2.99 was $5.50 today.

At the same time I've read that farmers are plowing under and dumping crops because they can't sell them. It is hard to find dairy products and fresh produce in my area. Why are farmers unable to sell? Keep hearing there is no shortage of these items. But they are not in the stores or if you do find them prices are high.

These farms are 2 hours away from major metropolitan centers so it can't be a logistics problem.


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Old 04-16-2020, 11:26 AM
  #2

One reason many of these farmers are plowing under or giving away is that they have supplied restaurant supply companies. We all know that restaurants are closed so the companies that supply them are closed too. Its not as easy as one might think to just switch from restaurant supply over to supplying retail stores. There would be a lengthy process (sales, permits, packaging, production, inspections, transportation etc) and..fresh produce like lettuce doesnt last that long. Bravo to the farmers who can give it away but this doesnt work for all

I also want to add that there is no shortage of fresh produce where I live so maybe your shortages are regional?
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I am not sure why farmers
Old 04-16-2020, 11:28 AM
  #3

are plowing under crops. Probably has something to do with harvesting and social distancing regulations.
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Old 04-16-2020, 11:48 AM
  #4

I've noticed this as well. Well actually it was my DH who noticed it. He said that when he went grocery shopping the other day .. there weren't any good sales.
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Old 04-16-2020, 12:00 PM
  #5

Definite YES to price hikes at the grocery store. But I was so thrilled to get what I wanted, I happily paid.

Definite NO to produce reduction. The produce selection at both of “my” stores was excellent (Ralph’s/Kroger’s & Trader Joe’s). And our town’s farmers market reopened 1 week ago; they were able to realllllly spread out so vendors and shoppers were plenty distant.

I read posts by PTers who said they miss salad and I was mystified. Is reduced produce where you live the reason? I have a big salad for lunch almost every day.


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Old 04-16-2020, 12:19 PM
  #6

Quote:
I read posts by PTers who said they miss salad and I was mystified. Is reduced produce where you live the reason? I have a big salad for lunch almost every day.
We grocery shop once a month now. Daily salads arent possible.
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Old 04-16-2020, 12:46 PM
  #7

Some of my husband's family are dairy farmers. They have not had to dump their milk, it has been slated to make cottage cheese and sour cream. Other farmers that they know have supplied schools and restaurants. There was no way to quickly transfer where their product goes. So it has to be dumped. The supply chains are not easily rerouted. There is so much that has to change. Products, packaging, locations, processors, distribution, and probably more that I can't think of.
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Old 04-16-2020, 12:48 PM
  #8

meandmyhouse, thank you, that was very interesting. Good luck to you.
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Old 04-16-2020, 12:57 PM
  #9

Yes, I've seen price hikes at the store. I'm guessing that will get worse before it gets better. I've been reading that we're going to have issues with supply lines of meat, especially processed meats, because of outbreaks in the meat packing plants.

The milk situation is heartbreaking in Wisconsin. Family farms have been teetering on the edge for quite a while and this is going to sink some of them. Right now communities are scrambling to find ways to at least be able to give away surplus milk to people who need it.

Quote:
These farms are 2 hours away from major metropolitan centers so it can't be a logistics problem.
When it comes to milk, it's hard to know exactly where your milk is coming from. It's ridiculous how much milk gets shipped around before it comes to the consumer, even when you live in a dairy state. Milk may come from a farm near your home but may be shipped hours away for processing and packaging and then shipped out for sale. I imagine that farms that produce milk to be sold in cartons in grocery stores are having trouble keeping up but farms that produce milk to be sold to schools, restaurants and such can't sell their milk but need to keep milking at the same rate so we don't see shortages down the road. I've been hearing about supply line bottlenecks when it comes to milk sold for cheese and butter.

I, personally, buy Organic Valley milk because, as far as I'm aware, they are the only company that is commited to buying from family farms and to being as local as possible. You can tell the difference; Organic Valley will keep in the fridge twice as long as any other milk.
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Old 04-16-2020, 02:08 PM
  #10

Thannk you for this. Going to look into Organic Valley.

We are being told by news reports that the shortages are due to migrant workers not being available. It's the randomness of the shortages that has me puzzled. I know California ships produce to all parts of the country so I would assume that if it is a picking issue everyone would be affected.

You can easily find strawberries, apples and avocados (very expensive).

Milk is in short supply. Eggs and butter sometimes available - very expensive.

Amiga can get her salad stuff. She is not all too far from me. We have shortages of lettuce, spinach and tomatoes. It's like a TP search. You go in the store and hope there is some left. It is also very hard to find flour, sugar, cake mixes, bananas, pasta. There are no cleaning supplies or paper goods. Even toilet bowl cleaner is hard to find.

All of these items are available at WalMart pick up. But there is currently a two week wait for a pick up slot.


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Old 04-16-2020, 02:19 PM
  #11

Interesting. We've had shortages of paper products and cleaning supplies (with a very gradual return of TP to some stores). I haven't really seen any restrictions on produce (except for an initial restriction on the amount of grapes people could purchase and that our farmer's market isn't open but I think the latter one is because there's not a lot of room to spread out).
I find it interesting to see the difference in what's available from store to store. When our Wegmans is short on meat,the Harris Teeter nearby has a lot and a good variety.
I had such difficulty finding paper towels that I ended up ordering some from WB Mason.
The unpredictable is hard.
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Old 04-16-2020, 03:16 PM
  #12

I was thinking the other day that we'd have shortages of fruits and veggies due to lack of migrant workers.
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Yes
Old 04-16-2020, 05:07 PM
  #13

I think prices have been going up. I too saw cheese prices rising, and one local market wanted $4.49 a pound for asparagus. As for the farmers, I read an article today about an egg farmer with an over abundance of eggs. It said his supplier distributed to restaurants, and that market has dried up He is able to sell to the public one day a week and has sold to several supermarkets, but he still has a lot of excess. Salad greens can be tough to find in my area. I had to go to a second market today to track some down. I also finally found a bad of naval oranges.
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Old 04-16-2020, 05:42 PM
  #14

Prices were definitely up last time I went shopping. My funniest thing I noticed were that in the two stores I shopped the thing that was missing in both was pizza fixings.
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weird things that are hard to find now
Old 04-16-2020, 07:08 PM
  #15

We're fine on produce here and haven't really noticed rising prices for grocery items.

Still no sign of hand sanitizer and toilet paper is still an issue.

But what gets me is that someone is apparently buying and eating all of my popsicles. I am addicted to Outshine lime, lemon, and tangerine. The watermelon is pretty good, too. Can't find them in either of the two supermarkets in town or in the smaller market.

So who has been eating my popsicles on here? Stop it.
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Old 04-16-2020, 07:25 PM
  #16

I've been to Trader Joes, Smart & Final, and Sams in the last week or so. All three had a good selection of produce. I have been able to find eggs and milk easily. I have noticed prices climbing on some items that we generally buy, but I am shopping through Instacart which sometimes has higher prices than in store so I thought maybe that was the reason.

As far as farmers dumping their products, I agree with other posters. It has to do with supply chains. If they were selling to schools and restaurants that are no longer open, it would be very difficult to suddenly change over to selling to grocery stores.

The Denny's restaurants in our area are offering drive through grocery pick up. You can print and fill in an order form. You drive up, hand them the form and park. They collect the items and bring them to your car. I think this is a fabulous way to help people in the community, continue to support their vendors, and keep themselves in business. They are also offering pick up for their regular menu.
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