Eating healthy foods may now be cheaper than purchasing high-calorie foods like burgers, chips, and candy due to price fluctuations, according to data from the Labor Department.
Prices for certain high-calorie foods have increased over the past year, some even higher than the rate of inflation. Price increases include burgers by 10%, hot dogs by 3.5%, chips and other snacks by 3.5%, candy by 4.6%, and ice cream, cakes, cupcakes, and cookies by 1.7%.
At the same time, prices for healthier foods, particularly fish and produce, have actually decreased since June of last year, including fish down 1.9%, fruits down 4.7%, and vegetables down 0.9%. Chicken prices actually increased by 1.1%, but that is still cheaper, and arguably healthier, than a burger.
And with that, here’s yet another strike against processed foods companies. Processed foods have taken hit after hit, particularly over the past few years as more consumers migrate to healthier foods, such as produce and lean meats. This is in large part due to concerns over artificial ingredients and unhealthy levels of sugar and certain types of fat.
Now, processed foods companies have price competition to contend with, plus consumers may soon come to realize the price fluctuations reported by the Labor Department on their own. This may usher them away from processed foods even more, particularly as the economy continues to improve, according to a recent report from Fung Business Intelligence Centre.