Your July 4 BBQ Will Cost 20.9% More this Year

Friends celebrating US Independence Day.
M_a_y_a / Getty Images

With inflation at a 41-year high, Americans are reeling from soaring prices. And now, brace yourself for a barbecue sticker shock this July 4. A new study finds that the cost of the summer cookout menu has risen by $12.46 from 2021 to 2022 a staggering 20.9% increase.

The new study, from the Political Calculations blog, used 2021 data from the American Farm Bureau Federation and compared the prices with recent prices at Walmart. It found that the prices of some summer cookout items soared particularly.

  • A half-gallon of vanilla ice cream will now cost you $7.44, compared to $4.69 – a whopping 58.6% increase.
  • A pack of eight hamburger buns will cost you 55.4% more — with 2022 prices at $2.58, compared to $1.66 in 2021.
  • Two pounds of boneless chicken breast increased 40.7% to $9.48, from $6.74 in 2021.
  • Two and a half pounds of potato salad increased 36% to $3.74 from $2.75 in 2021.
  • One pound of sliced cheese is now 23% more expensive, to $4.98 from $40.5 in 2021.

Some items, however, have seen their prices decrease, including two pints of strawberries, which saw a 15.5% decrease to $4.48 from $5.30; a 13-ounce bag of chocolate chip cookies, with a 10.9% decrease to $3.68 from $4.02 in 2021; and a 13-ounce bag of potato chips, which saw a 3% decrease, to $4.78 from $4.93 in 2021.

Inflation rose 8.6% in May, with the food index rising 1.2%, following a 0.9% increase in April and the food at home index increased 1.4%. the fifth consecutive increase of at least 1%. The index for dairy and related products rose 2.9%, its largest monthly increase since July 2007. The cereals and bakery products index increased 1.5% in May, up from the 1.1% increase in April. Meanwhile, the index for meats, poultry, fish, and eggs rose 1.1% over the month, with the index for eggs rising a whopping 5% and the index for fruits and vegetables rising 0.6% in May after declining in April.

Make Your Money Work for You

The blog notes, however, that there’s no question that a thrifty shopper could easily beat the Farm Bureau’s costs while shopping in either 2021 or 2022.

“If that’s you, a good strategy would be to substitute store-brand versions of the products, assuming you’re okay with any differences in quality. You could also shop at other grocery stores that may offer lower prices,” according to the blog.

The Farm Bureau will release its 2022 figures on June 28, according to MarketWatch. 

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