Soaring Beef Prices Force Shoppers To Find Other Foods

By Oren Liebermann

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) –– At Cappuccio’s Meats in the Italian Market, the cuts of beef are cutting into the profits.

“Every week when I talk to my suppliers, I’m amazed by how much it’s going up,” said owner Domenick Crimi.

Beef prices soared more than 10 percent last year according to the Department of Agriculture, and they will likely go up at least another 5 percent this year.

“It bumps up a bit, comes down a tiny bit, then it bounces again, and when it bounces, it goes up another dime, 15, 20 cents,” said Crimi, “and sometimes that’s in a week.”

A drought across Texas and Oklahoma has made food and water scarce for cattle, which has kept herds small. The Department of Agriculture says there are 91 million cattle nationally, the smallest herd since 1952. Add to that the rising cost of feed and rising beef exports, and the price of beef in the states is surging.

“Your customers get tired of hearing every week that it’s going up,” said Andrew Hurford, manager of Kissin Fresh Meats. “Sooner or later, they’re going to reach a tolerance ceiling and they’re going to say maybe it’s not worth it anymore.”

The meat locker at Kissin used to be filled with fresh beef hanging from rails. But now it is only half full, since they have replaced beef with pre-packaged goods like eggs and cole slaw, leaving them something else to sell when customers stop purchasing as much beef.

“We do a lot of fish now and chicken,” said Johanna Butler, visiting the Italian Market from Swedesboro, NJ. “I mean, beef indeed is very expensive, so I’ve made some changes.”

For many shoppers tired of high beef prices, the question is no longer where’s the beef, but how much is it going to cost?

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  • Red

    This is the HOAX and CHANGE that foolish people voted for….unfortunately those people surely will not have a clue how Obama’s QE1 QE2 and QE3 have caused inflation in the price of just about everything……

    Notice how gas has doubled under Obama yet demand has gone down?

  • roman

    go ahead vote for obama or romney and watch how inflation will soar like a rocket with the irony attached that interest rates will stay very low. then watch them as they will impose economic austerity measures like driving days and community food sharing weekends. then everyone will say: “we could have voted for ron paul”

    • Bobby

      Wipe off the Kool-Aid mustache. The election is for president, not king. Dr. Paul could be elected president and nothing would change. Contrary to what the Branch Paulinians think, the good Dr. Paul does not have a magic wand that he would then wave on Inauguration Day and make everything all better . There are two houses of Congress that he would need to deal with. There’s where the real problem lies.

      • luxomni

        You hit the nail on the head. Add to that the voters who put those idiots in Washington to bring the pork home for things that should be locally funded.
        There are only three possibilities of send money to Washington. You can get back less than you sent, in which case you are being ripped off! You can get back less than you sent in which case it is you getting ripped off; or, you can get back the same amount you sent, in which case, why bother?

  • zig zag

    This must be the help from Obamacare!

  • Dirty Turtlehead

    Sorry but I refuse to pay 3.89 a lb. for 75/25% Ground chuck.
    A whole chicken on sale at Kroger is as low as 79 cents per pound, now that’s a deal. I miss hamburger, steaks, roast. and sliced top round in my French dip sandwiches. It’s getting to the point that it’s cheaper to buy a dollar menu McDouble cheeseburger than it is buying it raw in the stores.
    We’ll look longingly at these low prices if we are punished with another 4 years of the hope for change prez…

    • John Scott

      WOW can I send you my addy??? I need 79 cents a pound chicken!!! I hear it taste like bho!!! sorry didn’t mean to sound like an American in America!!!

  • Donatella

    If you look at lifelong meat eaters compared to lifelong vegans, the vegans are by far healthier. As to the person who said this was somehow Obama’s fault, I don’t think he controls the weather in Texas or Oklahoma, which is the reason the cost of dead decaying cow meat is going up.

    Don’t believe me about the steak eaters vs. the vegetarians? Go into a steakhouse any day of the week and take a good long look at the patrons. They are the picture of ‘heart attack waiting to happen’.

    • Kevin

      your smug elitism identifies you as a typical liberal. Always have to be trying to control what others do. You eat your tofu. I’m eating my steak. Its why I have incisors and my eyes face forward. I would bet you on the other hand, have molars and chew real slow

      • Another Jean

        Enjopy your bypass suregery!

      • Another Jean

        Yeesh. I must have typed with my eyes closed! Anyway, if it’s “elite” to prefer to avoid colon cancer, heart attack, and stroke, more people should be elite! You meat eaters are raising the cost of health insurance. Maybe you should smoke, too, and get it over with even faster.

    • Sammie Jo

      Most vegans are anemic and don’t get enough protein.
      I worked in a health food store in Houston for years, the most sickly people were the vegans, they also had the worst attitude, always cranky.
      I’ll keep eating meat until I can’t afford it, but, like all things, it will cycle, we’ve been getting plenty of rain in my part of Texas the past 2 months, herds will build up again.
      You vegans can have the veggies, just don’t try to take my meat away.

    • yiddishlion

      Having worked in the healthcare industry for the last 20 years I can attest that you are a liar. Vegans are ALWAYS the sicker of the bunch. AND their life expectancy is less. Nice try though.

    • Durkee

      I”f you look at lifelong meat eaters compared to lifelong vegans, the vegans are by far healthier.”

      Not true. If you want to know what is truly healthy, look at what ANY nation feeds its military. Take a good look.

    • Clete Torres

      Vegans are not only not healthier, they are far and away NOT as smart.

      Your post proves it.

    • John Scott

      YOU are wrong!!! I have been there… trying to be PC correct…. naaaaaaa just eat healthy…. really…. check the facts fella…

  • Sam

    This is inflation and is from the federal reserve creating money out of thin air. Vote Ron Paul and end this nonsense.

    • John Scott

      shishhhhhhhhhh can’t we just git along!!!!

      I have never voted demoncratic but I am going to vote for bho…. I think he is the best thing for America in recent history… 4 more years and this country will be purged of a corrupt congress and senate because the people are going to purge every politician out by tea party votes…. There will be unrest like never seen in America. Because when good is bad and bad is good and Americans can’t say “Merry Christmas” because good is bad and can’t store more than seven days worth of food because good is bad and can’t own a gun because good is bad….. There will be a purging of the bad by the good! So lets pull together and re-elect this idiot….

      OK jus kiddin!!! He and she is outta here in less than a year!!! OMG how much more damage will be done!!!!

  • oldbill07

    We will buy a chuck roast once in a while and I cut it up to make beef stew or vegetable beef soup about once a month I go to a local meat packer and buy T bone stakes or rib eye one meal for our family of three The rest of the time it is chicken we buy boneless breasts if we buy whole chicken I cut it to eighht pieces pork Iis very versatile I watch for sales when a supermarket has pork or chicken as a lost lead. also I make my own sausage. wehave a big freezer I live in a rural area a neighbor gave us about 75# of deer meat.

  • Thomas Warmuth

    I run a BBQ restaurant which sold 1.4 million pounds of beef last year, as well as sausage, pork ribs, chicken, and turkey, so I’m somewhat familiar with this market. It’s not just beef going up – it’s everything, and it’s going up for everybody. Yes, the cattle herds are small, but that shouldn’t affect pork, turkey, and especially not chicken, which had the same price per pound for 9 years until it went up 10 cents a pound late last year. Some of this is due to rising corn prices, since corn is feed. Too much corn is being made into ethanol, causing shortages and price hikes. Some is the high cost of fuel. The rest is good old fashioned inflation, which we are told is around zero. That’s a flat out lie, as everyone who goes to the grocery store can attest.

    • oldbill07

      The nearest supermarket to me is a food lion and in general the beef that they sell is not all that good. The next nearest supermarket is at Wal Mart about 15 miles distant. All of their meat is better than and less expensive than Food lion. I am retired Navy and there is a huge commissary about 40 miles away all of their meats are top of the line and the price is better plus no state tax. We go there if we have to be in that area for some other reason.

  • Raj

    Another Obama tradgedy.

  • Eleanor Lock

    We have learned to get used to life without so much meat. I refuse to pay $4 a pound for fatty stew meat to make a stew. We do go to a local chain buffet on senior’s hours prices twice a week and enjoy a full meal for less than we would pay for a pound of a half of meat. We are not vegans, IMHO you need meat for the zinc that it provides and other nutrients, but just not very much. We eat very
    sparingly (even at the buffet, no need to make that an excuse to overeat!) and relish and enjoy every bite. Of course, we are in our 70’s, retired and don’t have to feed a family, so I do know that these price increases hurt families a lot!

  • Jason Harlow

    Don’t like the price? Raise your own food. It’s easy for the most part, rewarding, and you will save thousands.

    • oldbill07

      I have three Acers that my home is on I till a bit more than a quarter Acer and raise all of my own produce in summer we can foods freeze and preserve this Christmas we purchased a vacuum heat shrink for food. I give fresh produce to friends and to needy people all summer into late fall. I have planes to expand the garden and grow more this summer. The growing season in my part of N. C. begins about April 15 and lasts until the first frost usually in late October. Broccoli, collards, cabbage can be grown in cold weather so I have a winter garden.

      • Literate Larry

        I have 3 “Acers” IN my home, you must have an awefully small home! Of course…you can’t eat computers.

  • Mark

    Sorry, I misread the title. I thought that it red “Soaring Beef Force Shoppers To Find Other Foods”. I was going to suggest shoppers use a shotgun.

  • PETA kills animals

    It depends on where you live……we still have very, very affordable meat prices – even dirt cheap when the grocery chains have their once-a-month sales……………….

    • Brian Hovland

      When we buy our annual half cow, it is still 1.89 a pound. In the store…..a different story. That I see going up rather fast. But still, it is affordable.

  • Flyover State Guy

    Get a group of five or six families together and buy directly from a local farmer / rancher. We pay $3 lb dressed weight for lean, barley-fed beef. Your actual cut beef yield is about 70-75% of the dressed weight, about $4-$4.30 a lb. You’re supporting local ag, local families, and you’re getting better quality beef. If you’re inner city, then search the web for similar local opportunities.

  • Trish

    Glad to have a freezer full of Moose. Hope to win the lotto again this year. Wild turkey and brook trout are good fillers. Time to learn to fend for yourselves.

  • Syd

    Another benefit from the New Totalitarians’ Marxist Sheeple Revolucion! MOTO: “We brought it all down, man! Now what?” ——SIMPLE ECONOMICS:…When the Hope vs. Change Curve intersects the Cost of Beef Curve, people go hungry.

  • Super16

    Eat pork. Can’t beat a good ole piece a hog.

  • Sheri

    As beef prices have continued to go up and my husband got laid off from his job I have started cutting the amount of beef in my recipes by 50%.

  • RagnarB

    Don’t buy. Every few months our local super upscale market puts prime beef on sale at prices lower than choice, even choice on sale. I load up and freeze. Keep trading down. or don’t buy.

  • Fe Up

    Here is an idea-stop exporting beef and keep it here for Americans. Simple and easy. Tired of feeding the rest of the world at my expense.

    • NY9Solyndra

      Ranchers should sell their beef for the highest possible price, regardless of who buys it.

      • Ozlanthos

        So we should starve so ranchers can get rich? I mean I am a free market capitalist, but that doesn’t seem very good for the rest of our local economy!


  • Mark Hillyard

    Should have left the Great Plains to the Buffalo. If you want beef just use your smarts and serve it up in stews and other dishes that place more imphasis on veggies, pasta, potatos, and other things. No one needs a 1 lb piece of beef every day. Or get your gun and shot Bambi. Tastes just like chicken.

    • Ben Bryant

      “Or get your gun and shot Bambi”.

      I do.

      • AnyoneButObama

        Me too!!!! I not only hunt Bambi, but Bullwinkle too and got a Buffalo last year!! I have plenty of meat in my freezer. Also plant a garden every spring and have a cellar full of canned foods.
        I assure you, when others are starving me and mine will be just fine.

  • Obamaroid Ointment

    Don’t worry, there’s still enough tax money around to buy Dear Leader & Moochelle their $26 lb. Kobe beef burgers.

  • Zak

    Maybe PETA and us crazy vegans have had it right all the time!

    • vegans just want attention

      How could you have it right? A vegan diet is not as healthy as one with meat.

    • TheTRUTH

      “Vegan” is an old Navajo indian word that translates as “Bad hunter”

      • Obamao

        The Navajo didn’t have a language of syllables. any third grader can tell you that their language consists of 4 tones. low, middle low, middle, high.

        Learn before you leap

    • Locke

      No. Wrong yet again.
      I hope you are taking vitamin and mineral supplements as a vegan diet is the most unhealthy one possible.

      • mmercier0921

        a vegan diet supplicated with beef bone in vinegar is sustainable for human form and health.

        Vegan’s get most of their vitamins and minerals from the dirt that is consumede with greens and grains.

        electrolyte and calciums need to be added to ensure reproductive viability of the native.

      • Obamao

        FACT: Humans who eat meat have a 50% chance of getting a heart attack sometime in their life. Humans who eat no meat have a 4% risk of getting a heart attack sometime in their life.

        Come back when you’re educated.

        Learn before you leap

    • Ozlanthos

      Go to the mirror, open your mouth, and check out your teeth….Assuming you have them, notice the ones that look kind of like fangs? Yeah, those! They are called “canine-teeth”, and their function is to enable you to rip flesh from bone! Now you know how full of it PETA is about the human diet!!!!!


      • Obamao

        Our canine teeth resemble nothing of carnivorous beings. our canines look much more like herbivores, and are meant to bite into fruits and vegetables, not meat.

        Learn before you leap

      • Deb Farrell

        Then I assume that you race through the fields like a rabid dog and mount the animal you plan to eat and kill it without using firearms and then chew the uncook flesh from the bone.

        That is the function of the canine teeth and what the humans have is a genetic throw back.

        Early man ate more berries and vegetative diet because it is easier than hunting an animal.

        Those canines you are so proud of don’t have the ability to rip anything off the bone. If they could then man would not have learned to utilize tools to do the job and lazy backsides like yourself wouldn’t spend you time with a cart in Walmart looking at the meat on sale.

    • Super16

      When you die of malnutrition, then you’ll have it right.

    • Otto Zeit

      If “PETA and us crazy vegans” being “right” depends on the vagaries of our economy and its confluence with drought in Texas and rising beef exports, you are even more pathetic than I thought. I’d say “nice try” — but it really wasn’t.

    • Zak

      Well I started a nice little war. For the people that think a VEGAN diet is bad for you well ur just a fool. The facts are simple. Animals are killed everyday so people can eat meat. It is just not a nice thing to do. A diet that does not have meat is so much better for you. I live by a rule. If you are about to eat something that had a mother you should think twice. Cattle being raised for food not only is not good for you but is bad for the soil, water, and health of people in general. Before you say anything you should have your facts checked and come back to me with something more than a diet issue or my teeth. WAKE UP AND NOTICE THERE NEEDS TO BE A CHANGE!!! AND Obamao you rule thanks!

  • JerzeyBoy


    • AimHighCy

      Love the Chik-Fil-A plug. Nice.

  • Tim Benner

    Come on. You are in a meat locker in Philly and no reference to Rocky? Yo’ Adrian!

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