Arizona Food Prices Increase in First Quarter of the Year

Apr 4, 2014

Arizonans may soon have to start paying more for red meat. Arizona Public Radio’s Howard Fischer explains.


The latest Arizona Farm Bureau survey found prices for the 16 typical items they monitor up about 5 percent for the first quarter of this year compared to the same time last year. One of the big price spikes has been in the price of beef. Two years ago the organization’s survey showed you could buy sirloin tip roast at $4.85 a pound. That hit $5.94 last year — and is now up to an average of $6.49. Spokeswoman Julie Murphree said that is a combination of high demand both domestically and worldwide, coupled with higher prices for feed. Murphree said there are less expensive sources of protein, like eggs. But, they too are more expensive with the typical cost now running $2.27 a dozen, up 37 cents from a year earlier. Murphree said demand is a factor here, too.

“You may recall in 2012 there was a bird virus that a lot of the flocks in Mexico, they just died. So they were in short supply with their eggs. And so there was much more of a demand. And in the Hispanic culture in Mexico, they have eggs for almost every meal,” Murphree said.

The survey also showed milk prices also have increased. But, Murphree said she expects a decline later this year as milk consumption generally drops in the summer.