Grocery shopping feels like getting a punch in the stomach. You pick up a whole fried chicken, hoping it feeds four, and see the price — more than $10 at many New York-area stores. A whopping $18 if the bird is organic. Apples are almost $3 a pound. And don’t forget to buy a steak – you may need to take out a mortgage.
The Biden administration’s bright-eyed policies are to blame for the food inflation that’s making your trip to the grocery store a sheer agony. President Joe Biden prioritizes protecting the climate over your ability to affordably feed your family.
His policies drive up the cost of fertilizer, energy, and transportation from farm to store. Added to this is headline inflation driven by excessive government spending. The result is sky-high food prices.
There is no relief in sight. You can expect record-breaking food inflation by the end of 2022 Bank of America market analysts.
On Tuesday, Biden spoke to the nation about what he described as his anti-inflation plan. But in fact, he was just repeating the same list of baseless excuses for why prices keep going up.
Americans have been lashed out at a string of false statements from the White House about rising prices. First, Biden blamed for-profit oil producers, then meatpackers, then “Putin’s price hike.”
The President’s media cheerleaders are covering up the real causes. Washington Post columnist Heather Long announced Sunday that Americans are entering a “new age of scarcity” in which “much of everyday life is spiraling out of control.” As if food inflation were as inevitable as lunar eclipses. Not correct.
Biden’s harmful policies can be reversed.
Start with fertilizers and pesticides that cost American farmers 50% more than they did a year ago. Chemical fertilizers are mostly made from natural gas. Ending the Biden administration’s restrictions on domestic natural gas production, including opening up exploration and production on federal land and offshore, will help bring down fertilizer prices, say Heritage Foundation agricultural experts Daren Bakst and Joshua Loucks.
Biden’s war on fossil fuels has pushed up fertilizer costs In front Russian President Vladimir Putin has invaded Ukraine. While Russia is a fertilizer producer, the war in Ukraine only exacerbates a self-imposed problem.
Reducing fertilizer costs is crucial to making fruits and vegetables, but also meat, affordable. Feed prices for livestock and poultry increased by 12.7% last year, mainly due to rising fertilizer prices. If cattle are cheaper to feed, then so will be steaks.
Energy inflation is driving up food prices in other ways. Shipping Goods within the United States costs almost 25% more than a year ago, according to St. Louis Federal Reserve data, thanks to trucker shortages but also fuel prices.
You’d think Biden would bend over backwards to address the food price crisis. Instead, he’s fueling climate extremism — grocery shoppers be damned.
The Federal Conservation Reserve Program pays farmers to leave farmland unused. Agricultural groups asked Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack for permission to cultivate fallow land, however Wilsack said no, which has a “detrimental effect on . . . Efforts to mitigate climate change.”
Not all of the factors driving up food prices are within Biden’s control. Bird flu devastates poultry and egg producers. Drought slows down production in California. Putin’s war reduces wheat production in Ukraine. But Biden has the power to tame food inflation by opposing the climate extremists in his own party.
He should also contain headline inflation by calling for tight monetary policy (the abandonment of the Federal Reserve) and halting runaway federal spending, including even deferring a scaled-down Build Back Better.
Unfortunately, the President offered none of these means in his speech on Tuesday.
What Can Average Americans Do? Shop smart. These pre-cooked supermarket chickens are loss-leaders — a bargain designed to lure you to the store. They actually cost less than uncooked chicken, although they tend to be smaller.
You can also vote intelligently. There is a direct relationship between who rules Washington and what you pay at the box office.
Biden must channel Marie Antoinette, who dismissed public fear over the price of bread by saying, “Let them eat cake.”
Betsy McCaughey is a former Lieutenant Governor of New York.