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January 18, 2011   Email to Friend 

Melissa Martin
(334) 612-5448
January 18, 2011

Tired of turkey and ham? Give your palate a change with a T-bone steak, down 65 cents this month to $7.47 a pound.
MONTGOMERY, Ala. -- For shoppers who made 'save money' their New Year's resolution, this month's trip to the grocery store may start them off on the right foot. According to the latest results from the Federation's monthly food price survey, Alabama shoppers experienced a slight decrease of 0.7 percent, or 38 cents, this month for 20 basic market items, which had a total average cost of $53.72.

A significant portion of the savings this month can be attributed to lower prices in the meat case. T-bone steak prices saw a sharp decline, down 65 cents to $7.47 a pound; chuck roasts were down 14 cents to $3.32 a pound; chicken breasts were down 9 cents to $2.08 a pound; and bacon was down 3 cents to $4.65 a pound. Meanwhile, other meat prices edged up slightly. Boston butts were up 11 cents to $1.93 a pound; pork chops increased 7 cents to $3.36 a pound; whole fryers were up a nickel to $1.21 a pound; and ground beef increased 4 cents to $2.58 a pound. Eggs were down a penny to $1.78 a dozen.

Prices along the produce aisle were also mixed this month. Tomatoes experienced the largest price increase, up 11 cents to $1.68 a pound, while sweet potatoes increased 10 cents to 86 cents a pound. Red potatoes increased a nickel to 84 cents a pound. The savings on lettuce helped absorb the price increases on other items, down 20 cents this month to $1.38 a head.

Two dairy case staples experienced a modest increase this month, but prices remain affordable. Butter prices were up 36 cents to $4.31 a pound, while cottage cheese increased a nickel to $2.61 a pound. Shoppers with a sweet tooth found sweet savings on ice cream, down 10 cents to $4.10 a half-gallon. Milk decreased 4 cents to $3.05 a half-gallon.

Regional reports collected by volunteer shoppers throughout the state Jan. 1-10 showed the market basket averaged $50.82 in central Alabama, $52.89 in northwest Alabama, $53.33 in northeast Alabama and $57.83 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.

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