High Food Prices Forcing Labor Day Shoppers To Get Creative

By: Daniel Chanin Email
By: Daniel Chanin Email

You can't celebrate Labor Day without a big barbecue, but soaring food prices are making that difficult for many Americans looking to celebrate this holiday weekend.

It's not only food costs either, between high gas prices and a struggling economy, everyone is trying to save money any way they can. And for some, that means cutting back on what's typically a very big meal.

"We've paired down on the courses," says Gene Hughes, a shopper from Reno. "We're only gonna have two and so that's what we've decided to do. To have barbecue and cole slaw instead of potato salad and the traditional meal that goes with that."

It's no secret really; less food bought equals less money spent, but what do you do when you're barbecuing for a whole family and a few friends? In the case of shopper Robert Taylor, it's simple: just invite fewer people.

"Definitely going to have to scale back," says Taylor. "It's just gonna be my wife and I and my daughter."

According to the monthly producer price index, wholesale prices are up almost 10 percent from last Labor Day, which is the highest annual increase in 27 years. And while some consumers are cutting back on what they're buying, others are simply shopping smarter.

"We clipped a lot of coupons," says Dezeree Hodgson from Reno.

"And just try and look out for discounted things," says Kyle Christman. "Maybe try to get a bundle like two for a dollar or whatever."

Those two shoppers at Smith's in South Meadows managed to get enough groceries to feed four people for just 30 dollars. But apparently, all of that coupon clipping isn't for everyone. One shopper says she's just going to bite the bullet and buy what she needs, hoping that what's gone up, will eventually go down.

"You just gotta roll with it," says Terry Coombs. "And do what you can do. That's all you can do, you just can't change what you can't change."

The poor economy is forcing people to change their shopping habits and travel plans this holiday weekend. According to AAA, more than 300 thousand Americans who traveled last year at this time are staying home


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