JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Fire up the grill, but plan on digging deeper in your wallet. Your Labor Day cookout costs you more this year.
From meat to eggs to sugar, prices have gone up and for many Floridians, and that means they're having to cut back on what they eat and what they buy.
Jacksonville resident Angela Litch said, "What used to be $50 for a trip is now maybe $75."
As her trips to the grocery store have gotten more and more expensive she like many Floridians has changed the way she shops.
Litch said, "I do look for bargains and I use coupons more often that type of thing. Try to get as much as I can for my money but I do not want to give up quality so I just try to buy less of the items that I usually use and I kind of cut back on what we eat."
But on special occasions like Labor Day she's making an exception. "Tonight we're having steak and seafood just because of the holiday."
That meal will definitely cost her more this year compared to last. The price of beef is up 6.6 percent this July compared to July 2011. Fish and Seafood are up 1.6 percent. Poultry has risen 6.1 percent. Fats and oils are up 4.9 percent. Eggs have gone up 2.4 percent and sugar and sweets have climbed 4.4 percent.
Charlie Galvano said, "You have to be unconscious not to notice what's going on with prices."
Galvano says being retired and on a fixed income he has learned to adapt. He saves money where he can like choosing to buy cheapers cuts of meat.
"We do grill often, I like to BBQ but the prices have gone up and I have a friend in the business and I understand it's going to get worse next year," he said.
The USDA is forecasting food prices next year will increase three to four percent with the biggest spike expected to be the cost of beef. It's expected to increase four to five percent.
But some the price of some food items has dropped when you look at July 2012 compared to July 2011. Fruits and vegetables, pork and dairy products all decreased in price during that time.
First Coast News