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Debra Davis
(334) 613-4686

MONTGOMERY Shoppers will find plenty of bargains this month as they begin preparing holiday meals, despite a slight increase in food prices throughout the state. According to the Alabama Farmers Federation's monthly food price survey, shoppers paid an average of $35.58 this month for 20 basic market basket items, up 27 cents from last month.

Pork prices fell nearly 4 percent since last month, with pork chops averaging $2.79 per pound, bacon $2.31 per pound, and Boston butts $1.30 per pound.

Poultry prices rebounded this month, after falling nearly 5 percent in September. Fryers cost an average of 85 cents per pound, and chicken breasts averaged $1.84 per pound, compared to October's prices of 74 cents and $1.80 per pound, respectively.

A slight increase in beef prices for Alabama cattlemen has carried over into a small increase in beef prices at the meat counter. T-bone steak averaged $6.14 per pound this month, compared to $5.83 per pound last month, while ground beef was $1.39 this month, up from $1.28 last month. Chuck roast prices remained nearly the same at $2.02 per pound this month, compared to $2 per pound in October.

Egg prices showed the highest increase of survey items this month, up 7.9 percent over last month. A dozen eggs increased from 70 cents in October, to 76 cents in November.

Fresh vegetables, including tomatoes, red potatoes, lettuce and sweet potatoes increased an average of 2.5 percent statewide -- a small increase considering the change of season. Dairy products, including milk, ice cream, cottage cheese and butter, increased 1.3 percent from October to November.

Regional reports collected from around the state Nov. 1-6, show the November market basket total averaged $34.47 in central Alabama, $35.34 in the northwest area of the state, $35.53 in south Alabama and $36.55 in northeast Alabama.

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