Last weekend, my Step-dad was in the “big city” for work and we did a meet up for a visit, lunch and then to give him a ride to the airport, one of our stops from his downtown hotel was the big local farmer’s market, and as I looked at the booths, I was going a little wide eyed. The costs on meat was up, Up and UP. I was surprised to see grass feed lamb, organic but not certified(so eqaul to how I raise my own animals) and the cheapest was 2.99 a pd with the highest cut being 16.99 a pd, to which I say.. good heavens!
Whole Frozen Chickens/Turkeys/Ducks all raised like mine, and running right around 5 dollars a pd, and then there was the beef, o my, the costs of the beef was breathtakingly crazy to me.
I didn’t see any available rabbit but I know that at our really good local butcher shops a 4 pds dressed out whole rabbit will run between 20 to 25 dollars per.
So this morning on the radio, they were talking Beef on the rise, so here is some of what they said, in Canada, when the border was locked down, the price on beef dropped as low as the seller getting 10 cents per pds in 2002 or 2003.
Lets jump forward on to some reason why we are seeing such high prices and why I don’t think that the price will be going down any time soon.
- currently getting 65 cents per pd in my local area, which is up to a full 55 cent per pds increase for the farmers.
- Less farmers, less cows, since 2003-2004, we currently have 1.5 million less cows on farms, that means 1.5 million less calves per year being born.
- Farmers switching from Cow/Calf to Cash Cropping, Soy and Corn being the main crops being done as the rising prices on these crops mean that more money is to be made.
Interestingly, the farmer said that the bigger stores were in fact taking on some of the higher costs at the meat counter so that they could raise the prices slower, as there are consumer studies that say that if you raise things 3% that the will grumble but still buy but if it jumps 5% or more on a single item, that the rumbles will grow loud enough to make them choose to look for a cheaper cut of meat or a different meat altogether.
Other costs that add to rising prices that they didn’t talk about, but I am sure they figure in as well.
- Rising feed costs
- Rising Vet Costs
- Rising Hydro Costs
- Rising Gas Prices
- Rising Costs on All Fencing materials, when we fenced our first pasture four years ago, we paid 180 for that roll of sheep fencing, the second pasture those same rolls cost us 210, the third pasture, the same fencing cost 260, and this year, that same roll is now listed at 300. Of course to be honest, I have never paid full price, I always buy only when our local feed store puts them on sale twice a year typically 25 to 35 percent off.. still that is one huge hike in price!
So let me hear from you? Are you seeing the same increases in your area, your country? Do you eat beef? If so, are you buying less? What are you replacing it with, a different meat? or are you eating less meat? For those with land, are you looking hard at any spare peice of land and working to figure out how to grow your own protein on it? If this is the effect on regular prices, what does this mean for the local prices in regards to “organic beef” which is typically sold at least 30% higher.