Kentucky Food Prices Reach All-Time High, Officials Say No Cause For Alarm

Kentucky food prices are at an all time high, according to the State Farm Bureau’s quarterly marketplace report. But this isn’t a cause for concern, says bureau spokesman Dan Smaldone.

“This is one moment. This is one quarter. We’ll see what happens the next quarter. Really, this is most likely just catching up to where the rest of the nation has been for a few more months ahead of us.”

The quarterly Marketbasket Survey considers average prices of 40 basic grocery store items, like potatoes and cheese, in a handful of cities. Kentucky saw an increase of 5.7 percent, or $6.45, for these items from the previous quarter.  

That’s a total of $119.15.

Smaldone says the increase is partly due to last year’s drought that affected grain and which had ripple effects on other products, like pork and beef.

While Kentucky food prices are estimated to be at an all-time high, he says the state has experienced downward or stagnant trends in recent quarters while the nation’s estimates have continued to rise.

“I think when we look at one snapshot in time it’s hard to say that we have an issue on our hands with food prices. So we have to be cautious not to ring too many alarms with this,” Smaldone says.

The 5.7 percent increase was one of the largest quarterly jumps in the past five years.

Smaldone says the last time the Farm Bureau saw a rate increase over 5 percent was in 2008. 

Devin Katayama

Devin Katayama hosts middays for WFPL and reports on education and other Louisville issues.

@DevinWFPL

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