Food Security Amid Rising Costs

Consumers have likely noticed that prices have been climbing over the past 12 months. Inflation rates have been climbing as the world has tried to recover from the global pandemic, affecting prices on both goods and services in the marketplace. Prices on beef have not been excluded from this climb. From October 2020 to October 2021, the cost of beef has risen by 20 percent. 

 

Amid the uncertain financial situation, one way to help your family keep food costs down is to consider buying beef in bulk, especially by buying directly from ranchers. While meat prices have risen across the board, beef has taken the biggest jump in prices. 

 

One of the basic concepts of economics is supply and demand — how much of a product there is versus how much consumers want the product. In the early days of the pandemic, when restaurants either scaled back operations or closed entirely, demand for beef was low. Meat processing plants decreased their output and ranchers slowed their production and culled their herds. Now, as businesses are reopening and demand is increasing, the supply is low, causing prices to go up. 

 

Other issues are adding to increased beef prices. Farmers will take time to build their herds back up to capacity. Many workers who were furloughed from processing plants either found other positions, or simply retired, and the labor shortages have kept production low even though demand is increasing. On top of this, further supply chain issues are raising prices on other related costs, such as feed for cattle or materials for packaging. Each of these adds to the cost of bringing beef to the market, and those costs are passed onto the consumer. 

 

The good news is that production is beginning to catch up with demand, meaning that prices will likely begin to normalize. However, with uncertainty in the market, this may be a long, slow decline. 

 

Buying bulk beef from a local provider cuts out many of the middlemen and can yield a lower per-pound price on quality beef, while also supporting small, local businesses rather than the large national suppliers. Buying in bulk will save you money in the long run and ensure you come out ahead if prices continue to rise. 

 

For information about buying in bulk from Dark Hammock Legacy Ranch, visit dh-lr.com/grass-fed-beef/