Farm Inflation: Prices Surge for Chickens, Eggs, Wheat, Corn, and Milk

Girl holding chicken and egg
Getty Images/ Martin Novak

Prices paid to American farmers for crops and livestock continued to soar in April, data released by the Department of Agriculture on Tuesday showed.

The index of prices received for agricultural production was up 5.1 percent compared with a month earlier. Compared with a year ago, prices of U.S. agricultural products are up 28 percent.

The index for crops rose 1.7 in April and is up 17 percent compared with April of 2021. The livestock index jumped eight percent from March and is up 40 percent compared with a year ago.

Food grains—including corn and wheat—were up 2.8 percent for the month and 45 percent compared with a year ago. Feed grain prices increased 7.8 percent from the prior month and 33 percent from a year ago.

The poultry and egg index jumped 22 percent from March and 94 percent from a year earlier. The April market egg price, at $2.21 per dozen, is 81.0 cents higher than March and $1.64 higher than April 2021. The price of chickens raised for meat, at $1.05 per pound, is 15.3 cents higher than March and 49.7 cents higher than a year ago. At 95.3 cents per pound, the April turkey price is 2.5 cents higher than the previous month and 18.5 cents higher than April 2021.

Milk prices climbed 4.12 percent in April and are up 47 percent compared with a year earlier.

The costs faced by farmers are rising as well. April Prices Paid Index for Commodities and Services, Interest, Taxes, and Farm Wage Rates rose 1.0 percent from March 2022 and 14 percent from April 2021. Higher prices in April for complete feeds, other services, nitrogen, and feed grains more than offset lower prices for feeder pigs, LP gas, gasoline, and supplements.

Fruit and nut prices rose 6.6 percent from March but are down 4.6 percent from a year earlier. Price increases during April for strawberries, grapefruit, and apples more than offset price declines for oranges, according to the Department of Agriculture. Prices rose for tomatoes, potatoes, broccoli, and cucumbers while falling for lettuce, celery, cauliflower, and onions. The index for vegetables dropped 27 percent compared with March but remains 39 percent above last year’s level.


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