Thursday, March 5, 2015

Are food prices heading down?

Yes, says Jon Feeney

Are food prices heading down?

(istock photo)

"Food industry input costs" fell almost 1% last week, "the 7th decline in the last 8 weeks," 12th of the last 16, writes veteran food-industry analyslt Jonathan P. Feeney, now of of Atlhos Research, Wayne. More hogs on the market, record soybean crops and low summer natural-gas prices outweighed stronger dairy, grain and coffee demand to drive down overall costs.

His Feeney's Food Cost Factor index has fallen to around 130 (on a scale of 1/1/2006 = 100), down from 140 last fall and over 160 in the spring of 2011, when rising demand from China and elsewhere pushed prices higher in American supermarkets, too.

Recent commodity price movements translate to higher prices at specialty-commodiy-dependent companies like Green Mountain Coffee and Hershey, but lower prices for products sold by grain- and sugar-dependent Lance snacks, Coca-Cola and Flowers Foods (they own Tastykake), vs. a year ago. 

Joseph N. DiStefano
About this blog

PhillyDeals posts raw drafts and updates of Joseph N. DiStefano's columns and stories about Philly-area finance, investment, commercial real estate, tech, hiring and public spending, which he's been writing since 1989, mostly for the Philadelphia Inquirer.

DiStefano studied economics, history and a little engineering at Penn, taught writing at St. Joe's, and has written the book Comcasted, more than a thousand columns, and thousands of articles, and raised six children with his wife, who is a saint.

Reach Joseph N. at JoeD@phillynews.com or 215 854 5194.

Joseph N. DiStefano
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