STAR-SPANGLED SAVINGS ALONG GROCERY AISLES
MONTGOMERY, Ala. -- By this point in the year, most shoppers have already enjoyed several platefuls of barbecued ribs and baked beans. But before those "King of the Grill" aprons are stored away for another season, backyard chefs may want to take advantage of the savings this month on steaks and pork chops. According to the latest results from the Federation's monthly food price survey, the average cost of 20 basic market basket items was $53.77, down 17 cents or three-tenths of 1 percent from a month earlier.
|Bacon-wrapped pork chops are inexpensive and delicious entrees to add to those summer menus. Pork chops were down 10 cents this month $3.45 a pound. |
Despite lower prices per pound on most items in the meat cast, a sharp rise in the average price of chuck roasts offset savings this month. Chuck roasts were up 23 cents a pound to $3.66, while bacon increased a nickel to $4.73 a pound. Chicken breasts saw a slight increase of 2 cents to $2.14 a pound. Meanwhile, shoppers found sizzling savings on T-bone steaks, pork chops, whole fryers, Boston Butts and ground beef. T-bone steaks were down 17 cents a pound to $8.51; pork chops dropped 10 cents to $3.45 a pound; whole fryers were down 3 cents to $1.21 a pound; Boston butts were down 2 cents a pound to $1.86; and ground beef was down a penny to $2.52 a pound. Eggs averaged at $1.16 a dozen, a savings of 11 cents from June.
While most items along the produce aisle saw a modest increase this month, the savings on tomatoes more than made up for the difference. Since buying in-season produce is a simple way to save money and still eat well, an abundance of fresh tomatoes at farmers markets and grocery stores allowed shoppers to save 43 cents a pound on this versatile vegetable, down to $1.20 a pound. Meanwhile, lettuce increased 9 cents to $1.44 a head; red potatoes were up 2 cents a pound 84 cents; and sweet potatoes were up 2 cents to 95 cents a pound.
Shoppers in the market for sweet treats didn't find the sweetest deals in the dairy case this month, but the savings throughout the rest of the grocery store made receipts easier to pocket. Ice cream was up 3 cents to $3.93 a half-gallon, while milk and butter prices increased 14 cents each. Milk prices averaged $3.09 a half-gallon, and butter increased to $3.81 a pound. Cottage cheese dropped 6 cents to $2.51 a pound.
Regional reports collected by volunteer shoppers throughout the state July 1-10 showed the market basket averaged $52.12 in northwest Alabama, $52.62 in northeast Alabama, $55.38 in central Alabama and $55.65 in south Alabama.
Alabama Farmers Federation, a member of the American Farm Bureau Federation, is the state's largest farm organization. Its county members conduct the informal monthly market basket survey as a tool to reflect retail food price trends.