Rising Food Costs – Things we can all do!

I never go down the meat isle in a grocery store – I don’t need to since we raise our own and we subscribe to a CSA that provides us with a large portion of our veggies.  However, I was curious the other day when getting groceries, so I went for a stroll and even I was shocked.  I had been hearing rumblings from friends, but it really is getting bad out there and it seems to be affecting not only the meat isle but everything else food related.  Even fast food is getting out of hand.  I spend over $24 the other day for a burger combo and two sides of fries for the kids on the way home from up north.

What are the causes of the current issue and how do we get around this issue? This Globe and Mail piece does a good job of outlining some of the issues.  As to be expected, things I have mentioned before in other posts are playing a role: climate change, COVID-19, high input costs, shortage of labour are all factors.  I will leave the statistics to the academics but there are some easy things we can all do (we have to buy some groceries too; Julie and I aren’t that good in a kitchen).

  1. Shop Local – the best way to avoid the supply chain issues is to shorten or get rid of it.  For our farm, I am the supply chain.  We, as a group of farmers, take the beef, pork, and chicken to the butcher and then you come pick it up.  It can’t get any shorter than that. Our butcher is about 5 minutes from the farm.
  2. Learn to cook – As I write this, I have a pot of beef barley soup going made from two soup bones and leftover vegetables.  This will provide at least 20 meals for us for under $15 in cost.  You can barely get one drive thru meal for $15 right now.
  3. Plan your meals to reduce waste.  I need to improve on this one myself but wasting food is one of my pet peeves.  Make a list when you shop so the cart doesn’t overflow with spur of the moment decisions that will sit in your fridge or cupboards forever. I try to keep a running grocery list using the Notes feature of my phone so that I won’t lose it.

COVID-19 will eventually end so that pressure on food costs will ease but climate change, labour, and input costs are probably here to stay so we need to adapt as best we can.

Our Angus calves grazing with their momma cows at our place.
Eastondale Jackson

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