Feb 22, 2023 - News

How Chicago's food prices are rising in 2023

Data: CPI; Chart: Axios Visuals
Data: CPI; Chart: Axios Visuals

We know your pocketbooks feel it, but we finally have official numbers into how food prices are rising this year.

Driving the news: Grocery prices rose 0.8% in Chicago in January compared with November 2022, per the latest Consumer Price Index (CPI) data, Axios' Alex Fitzpatrick and Kavya Beheraj report.

  • Nationally, the cost of groceries rose 0.7% from December to January.

Why it matters: For many of the approximately 63% of Americans living paycheck to paycheck, rising food prices can be an especially difficult financial challenge.

  • Such prices, meanwhile, are particularly vulnerable to outside and difficult-to-control forces, such as climate change and geopolitical happenings.

The big picture: Among the metro areas with newly published CPI data, Chicago's increases were among the lowest.

  • Denver saw grocery prices rise 2% from November 2022 to January 2023, and in Washington, D.C., it was around 1.6%. (Data from these areas is published every other month.)

What they're saying: Mark Schneider, CEO of global food giant Nestlé, recently predicted that the price of staple foods will keep rising this year.

  • "We are still in a situation where we're repairing our gross margin and, like all the consumers around the world, we've been hit by inflation and now we're trying to repair the damage that has been done," Schneider told reporters, per CNN.

Yes, but: The retail price of one key foodstuff — eggs — is expected to drop after a collapse in wholesale prices.

The bottom line: Though inflation has appeared to be cooling off broadly speaking, experts are warning that price increases are still possible, even probable — like aftershocks following an earthquake.

  • "No one said disinflation would be a smooth ride," Robert Frick, an economist at Navy Federal Credit Union, wrote in a recent note, as Axios' Neil Irwin and Courtenay Brown reported.

Editor's note: This article was corrected to reflect that the quote from Mark Schneider of Nestlé came from a call with reporters, per CNN.


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