Grocery prices drop for first time in a year, but shoppers not seeing relief at register

‘I have two kids now, so feeding them has really just done a toll on our budget’

ROANOKE, Va. – Nowadays, a trip to the grocery store can cost hundreds and you’re likely leaving with less.

For the first time in a year, inflation data shows that grocery prices have dropped. According to the latest Consumer Index Report, grocery prices fell by 0.2 percent from March to April. The price of meats, poultry, fish, eggs, fruits, and vegetables all dropped in April. The price of cereals, bakery products and dairy increased.

Although the spike in food prices is slowing, local shoppers say their dollar doesn’t go far.

“I think something people forget is it’s compounding. So yeah, it’s 1 percent now. It was 2 percent before then. But over time, it builds and builds and builds. Prices aren’t going down. So feeling the effects of that, for sure,” said one shopper, Matthew Pendleton.

“[Prices] are definitely a lot more than I remember them being,” said another shopper, Caitlin Bigman.

Even though inflation on food prices has stalled, Pendleton said he’s still feeling the sting at the register.

“I come out with less stuff. make more choices. Might take a little bit longer. put something back on the shelf. think about it a little bit more. So Just more selective in what I’m actually buying,” said Pendleton.

Overall, food prices are up 2.2 percent from last year. The cost of dining out is also up 26 percent since before the pandemic, which has many Americans cooking meals at home.

Another shopper, Caitlin Bigman, said it’s getting harder to feed her family.

“I have two kids now, so feeding them has really just done a toll on our budget,” said Bigman.

She said she has to make choices about what foods fit in her family’s budget.

“Get more creative. Try and pick things, meals, that I can kind of use the same things over and over again, so we’re not doing grocery runs all the time,” said Bigman.

“Maybe in the beginning, it was reacting to the market and now I think it’s just, kind of, greed,” said Bigman. “You have to buy food. There’s not an option. So, you’re going to pay what you’re going to pay.”

10 News asked Kroger how the company sets its food prices and got a statement that reads:

“As a company, we strive to provide the best value to our customers while remaining competitive in each geography we operate in. Our pricing strategy considers various factors such as competitive activity and customer preferences. This approach allows us to adapt to the unique dynamics of each market, remain sustainable, and offer pricing that is both fair and competitive.

Kroger is a destination for fresh affordable food with zero compromise on value, quality, or convenience. Kroger also offers our customers a variety of ways to save through our loyalty program where customer can take advantage of weekly sales, digital deals, fuel points and Our Brands savings and additional promotions and special offers.”


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You can watch Lindsey during Virginia Today every weekend or as a reporter during the week!

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