WASHINGTON, D.C. – There’s great news. The cost of food for your Fourth of July BBQ will be 16 whole cents cheaper than it was last year. That’s the great weekend news from President Joe Biden today. What Biden left out was that the price of gas to get to your family BBQ is nearly 50% more expensive than it was this time last year too.
What about propane for your gas grill? In October, it was $1.72 per gallon. Today, the price is hovering around $2.89.
“Planning a cookout this year? Ketchup on the news. According to the Farm Bureau, the cost of a 4th of July BBQ is down from last year. It’s a fact you must-hear(d). Hot dog, the Biden economic plan is working. And that’s something we can all relish,” the Biden administration tweeted today.
If only we could fill our gas tanks with ketchup.
“Apparently, no one at the Biden @WhiteHouse has been to the gas station recently. The average price for a gallon of gas is $3.15. This is the HIGHEST price for a gallon of gas since 2014 and a 42% INCREASE from last year,” Congresswoman Elise Stefanik replied.
The news comes from the U.S. Farm Bureau.
“U.S. consumers will pay just a few cents less for their favorite Independence Day cookout foods compared to last year, including cheeseburgers, pork chops, chicken breasts, homemade potato salad, strawberries and ice cream, says the American Farm Bureau Federation,” the Biden led agency said. “Farm Bureau analysis reveals the average cost of a summer cookout for 10 people remains affordable at $59.50, or less than $6 per person. The cost for the cookout is down just 16 cents (less than 1%) from last year, but 8% higher compared to 2019.”
The largest year-to-year price increase was for strawberries. Survey results showed 2 pints of strawberries at $5.30, up 22% from last year, due to strong demand and the effects of several weather events including severe rain, hail and high winds that caused significant setbacks to the harvest early in 2021.
Retail price changes for products in the meat case are a bit more nuanced, according to AFBF Economist Veronica Nigh.
“Beef and pork processing plant disruptions that occurred in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic have been resolved, leading to lower retail ground beef and pork chop prices in 2021 compared to 2020,” Nigh said. “However, consumers looking a bit farther back to compare prices are seeing higher prices for ground beef, pork chops and chicken breasts compared to pre-pandemic (2019) prices. That’s due to continued strong demand for American-grown beef and pork from both U.S. and international consumers.”
AFBF’s summer cookout menu consists of cheeseburgers, pork chops, chicken breasts, homemade potato salad, pork & beans, strawberries, potato chips and fresh-squeezed lemonade with ice cream and chocolate chip cookies for dessert.
The year-to-year direction of the marketbasket survey tracks closely with the federal government’s Consumer Price Index report for food at home. Both the index and the marketbasket remain relatively flat compared to year-ago levels.
The cost of transporting, processing and packaging farm-grown foods so they’re ready to be enjoyed on our tables is a major component of the total cost of the menu.
“According to the Agriculture Department’s revised Food Dollar Series, farmers currently receive approximately 8% of every food marketing dollar,” Nigh said. “The farmer’s share of the retail food dollar is as low as 2% to 4% for highly processed foods such as bread and cereal, and as much as 35% for some fresh-market products.”
The July 4th cookout survey is part of the Farm Bureau marketbasket series, which also includes the popular annual Thanksgiving Dinner Cost Survey of common food staples Americans use to prepare meals at home.
This year’s survey combines Bureau of Labor Statistics food price data with the results collected by more than 160 volunteer rural shoppers across the country and in Puerto Rico, including Farm Bureau members and others.
AFBF is the nation’s largest general farm organization with member families in all 50 states and Puerto Rico. Learn more at http://facebook.com/AmericanFarmBureau or follow @FarmBureau on Twitter or @americanfarmbureau on Instagram.
Individual Prices, AFBF 2021 Summer Cookout
- 2 pints of strawberries, $5.30 (up 22%)
- 13-ounce bag of chocolate chip cookies, $4.02 (up 11%)
- 8 hamburger buns, $1.66 (up 6%)
- 2.5 pounds of homemade potato salad, $2.75 (up 3%)
- 2 pounds of boneless, skinless chicken breasts, $6.74 (up 1%)
- 32 ounces of pork & beans, $1.90 (down 13%)
- 2 pounds of ground beef, $8.20 (down 8%)
- Half-gallon of vanilla ice cream, $4.69 (down 5%)
- 3 pounds of center cut pork chops, $11.63 (down 2%)
- 2.5 quarts of fresh-squeezed lemonade, $3.65 (down 2%)
- 1 pound of sliced cheese, $4.05 (down 1%)
- 13-ounce bag of potato chips, $4.93 (down 1%)