Food Inflation

The Lempert Report
November 16, 2022

Phil: So, Sally, let's talk about food inflation. We know that the grocery prices are up, just about every story that's out there is showing increases depending on where you want are in the country between 12 and 15%. Also, a lot more stories coming out about how Thanksgiving is gonna be more expensive. But there's a way that retailers can help, really by merchandising particular kinds of foods, to their shoppers to save money and get better health. Tell us a little bit about that. 

Sally: Yes, what we're talking about today is encouraging our shoppers to look for seasonal produce. Now, this is not only gonna save them money, Phil, but also when these fruits and vegetables are in season, they are brighter, they are plumper, they have, they travel, they travel less distance. So they have more flavor. They have a higher concentration of nutrients. They're better for the environment because we use less emissions to get them from one place to another. So it's a great way to encourage your shoppers to use these products in recipes. Retail dieticians can help with that. Also, the U S D A has a great place on their website where you can look up what's in season and you can find recipes on how to use them. And then I also found this other cool website, seasonal food, where you can look up by your state and by the month, what is in season. 

Phil: Yeah, great tools. And, you know, it's something that we've been talking about for years that I just wish that retailers would only sell produce that's in season. I remember as a kid and I'm sure you did as well, that, you know, you would look forward to certain foods, certain produce items when they're in season. You know, nobody was trying to buy peaches in January, you know, or strawberries in January just didn't make a lot of sense. And I love, love these two sites that you found, Excuse me. And, you know for fall, we're in fall, you know, just some of the items that are in season. Apples, bananas, beets, bell peppers, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, celery. It just goes on and on to probably another 20. Same thing for winter. Apples, avocados, bananas, beets, brussel sprouts, cabbage, kiwi fruit, lemons, limes, onions. 

Phil: I mean, the list goes on. So there's not gonna be a shortage of produce items for us. I mean, people panic, Oh my God, if I'm only going to eat what's in season, then you know, it's gonna limit. It's not gonna limit you. What you're gonna do is you're going to, as Sally pointed out, you're gonna get something that's tastier, has better nutrition and is less expensive. Wow. What a combination.