Many Americans were less than impressed by the Biden administration’s trumpeting the $0.16 savings for last year’s July 4 cookout compared to 2020. It’s a virtual certainty that the White House will not want to talk about the projection that this year’s cookout price has skyrocketed by 17% in a single year.
The American Farm Bureau Federation has conducted its annual analysis of Independence Day celebration costs and finds that the national average price for a 10-person cookout this year will be $69.68, a full $10.18 more than a year ago.
The survey includes traditional cookout necessities like ground beef, potato chips, buns, ice cream, and other summertime outdoor foods. The price for two pounds of ground beef has shot up by more than one-third over the 2021 price.
Just last year, the official White House Twitter account made a post highlighting the $0.16 decrease from 2020 cookout prices reported at the time by the Farm Bureau. Many poked fun at the boisterous tweet that claimed, “Hot dog, the Biden economic plan is working. And that’s something we can all relish.”
Farm Bureau chief economist Roger Cryan said that continuing supply chain disruptions and price inflation have made farm production supplies more expensive through the last year. He said “like consumers, farmers are price-takers not price-makers.” He said the bottom line for the economy is that the higher grocery prices are not covering the surging increases in farm expenses.
Fuel and fertilizer cost increases have hit agricultural producers especially hard. Farm fuel is up in the same way that consumer gas prices are, and the cost of most common fertilizers has tripled.
The new cookout price survey is consistent with the inflationary strain that has been placed on all ordinary American consumers in the last year. The official Consumer Price Index reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics indicates that the cost of all included items increased by 8.6% for the annual period that ended in May. That is the largest annual increase since December 1981.
The national average price for a gallon of regular gas on Wednesday stood at $4.87, off 15 cents from the all-time record set two weeks ago, according to AAA. It stood at $3.11 a year ago.