Scary stats on food inflation

You’re not imagining it. Your grocery bill is getting bigger, even if you’re not buying more.

·         The cost of groceries increased 4.2 percent from July 2010 to July 2011, according to the Consumer Price Index.

·         The cost of ground beef increased 11.5 percent since July 2010, according to the USDA, with a chance to rise another 7 percent to 8 percent this year.

·         Pork cost 7.3 percent more in July 2011 than it did in July 2010.

·         Chicken prices are up 2.7 percent from July 2010.

·         Turkey prices jumped 7.1 percent from last year.

·         Fish prices were 7.9 percent higher in July this year. The USDA expects prices to spike even more this year due to the effects of the Japanese tsunami and earthquake.

·         Fresh vegetable prices increased at a pace of 5.9 percent this July over last year.

·         Fresh fruit is up 7.9 percent from last year.

Since we’re not going to stop eating any time soon, here are some other steps you can take to save on groceries. Follow the links to articles with more details.

1.       Use coupons.

2.       Buy in bulk.

3.       Stay away from processed foods and start from scratch.

4.       Master the art of leftovers, and cook creatively.

5.       Beware of sales that don’t save you money.

6.       Stick to what’s in season.