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Which grocery items rose in price the most last month?

Inflation may be easing, but food prices are still high for consumers.

Food costs increased by 0.4% according to the September 2022 Consumer Price Index. While this may not be considered a significant increase, there are several reasons why food prices are still through the roof, including ongoing food supply-chain issues kicked off by the COVID-19 pandemic and still echoing today.

During the initial lockdowns, food producers struggled with a manageable system that would allow them to serve grocery consumers. Labor disruptions also increased food production costs as more funds had to be invested in training workers and protecting food from contamination. Food growers, processors, and distributors were required to adjust packaging, heed new labeling requirements, and meet heightened demand from food retailers.

So which food items have seen an uptick in pricing?

Potatoes have historically been a staple food item, as they’re generally affordable and easy to prepare. But white potatoes have increased in price due to the lack of supply and the fluctuating farm share of retail prices. The U.S. Department of Agriculture reported 50 pounds of wholesale Idaho potatoes ranging from $1-$4 in August.

Cereals and baking products have also seen a surge in prices on grocery store shelves. This is due to the long shelf life of these products and the multi-pack options, which demand higher SKU pricing. SKUs are used to figure out pricing strategies.

Stacker used monthly Bureau of Labor Statistics data to find the ten grocery items that experienced the largest price increases from August to September, using year-over-year changes as a tiebreaker when needed.

An array of steak meat in a display case at a supermarket

Canva

#10. Steak, sirloin, USDA Choice, boneless, per lb.

- One-month increase in cost: +2.2%

- Annual change in cost: -4.2%

- September 2022 cost: $10.54

Person picking up potato in supermarket

Suriyawut Suriya // Shutterstock

#9. Potatoes, white, per lb.

- One-month increase in cost: +2.5%

- Annual change in cost: +27.7%

- September 2022 cost: $1.02

Sugar 4 lb. bags on the shelf

JHVEPhoto // Shutterstock

#8. Sugar, white, 33-80 oz. pkg, per lb.

- One-month increase in cost: +2.5%

- Annual change in cost: +21.3%

- September 2022 cost: $0.79

A pile of chocolate chip cookies

Canva

#7. Cookies, chocolate chip, per lb.

- One-month increase in cost: +2.6%

- Annual change in cost: +20.5%

- September 2022 cost: $4.80

An arrangement of lemons

Canva

#6. Lemons, per lb.

- One-month increase in cost: +2.7%

- Annual change in cost: Unavailable

- September 2022 cost: $2.09

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Sliced wheat bread on a cutting board

Canva

#5. Bread, whole wheat, pan, per lb.

- One-month increase in cost: +2.8%

- Annual change in cost: +12.4%

- September 2022 cost: $2.36

Sliced deli ham

Canva

#4. Ham, boneless, excluding canned, per lb.

- One-month increase in cost: +3%

- Annual change in cost: +13.6%

- September 2022 cost: $5.50

Ham on platter

Brent Hofacker // Shutterstock

#3. All Ham

- One-month increase in cost: +3%

- Annual change in cost: +13.3%

- September 2022 cost: $4.34

A person inspects a head of romaine lettuce at a supermarket

Canva

#2. Lettuce, romaine, per lb.

- One-month increase in cost: +5.7%

- Annual change in cost: Unavailable

- September 2022 cost: $3.00

Strawberries arranged in pint baskets ready for sale

Dusan Petkovic // Shutterstock

#1. Strawberries, dry pint, per 12 oz.

- One-month increase in cost: +8.8%

- Annual change in cost: +13.4%

- September 2022 cost: $2.78

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