BLS: Inflation in Price of Food Highest Since 1979

Terence P. Jeffrey | September 13, 2022 | 11:19am EDT
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(Photo by Gaelen Morse/Bloomberg via Getty Images)
(Photo by Gaelen Morse/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

( - The Consumer Price Index (CPI) report released today by the Bureau of Labor Statistics showed that prices on all items in the United States increased by 8.3 percent from August of 2021 to August of 2022, with the price of gasoline rising 25.6 percent, the price of electricity rising 15.8 percent and the price of food rising 11.4 percent.

The report indicated that the 11.4 percent year-to-year increase in the price of food was the highest in 43 years.

"The food index continued to rise, increasing 0.8 percent over the month as the food at home index rose 0.7 percent," said the report.

"The food index increased 11.4 percent over the last year, the largest 12-month increase since the period ending May 1979," said the report.

Overall, the price increases from August of last year to August of this year were slightly less than the increases from July of last year to July of this year. “The all items index increased 8.3 percent for the 12 months ending August, a smaller figure than the 8.5-percent increase for the period ending July,” said the CPI report.

Table 2 in the CPI report lists the increases in prices by “detailed expenditure category.”


The single biggest year-to-year price increase was for fuel oil, which increased 68.8 percent from August 2021 to August 2022.

The second largest increase was for “other motor fuels,” which increased 53.0 percent from August 2021 to August 2022.

The third largest increase was for eggs, which increased 39.8 percent from August 2021 to August 2022.

The fourth largest increase was for margarine, which increased 38.3 percent from August 2021 to August 2022.

The fifth largest increase was for airline fares, which increased by 33.4 percent from August 202 to August 2022.

The sixth largest increase was for “[u]tility (piped) gas service,” which increased by 33.0 percent from August 2021 to August 2022.

The price of bread also jumped by 16.2 percent from August to August, according to the CPI table. The price of chicken jumped 16.6 percent. The price of milk jumped 17.0 percent. The price of potatoes jumped 15.2 percent. The price of rice jumped 13.0 percent.

And the price of baby food jumped 12.6 percent.

The business and economic reporting of is funded in part with a gift made in memory of Dr. Keith C. Wold.

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