There are times when I'd like to share something with you but my Voice in the Garden site does not seem the appropriate place, thus, this blog.

There are experiences, thoughts, views... and for anyone lurking/waiting to pounce (as has occurred on several occasions), please do not attempt to turn what I post into a political statement. This is NOT a political site, but IS about occurrences, reality, and personal opinion concerning what I see in the world around me and my family. There are many excellent writers whose works "speak" to me, and I shall include some of them. At times it may be
something I think you would enjoy or simply whatever ails you (me).
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Saturday, October 16, 2010

$62 Dollars For 5 Items

After coming back from the grocery store one day, I wrote on my Voice in the Garden blog about some regulations we are facing and the rising costs we are experiencing, especially in food.

Yesterday, my husband and I went to pick up 5 items at the grocery store for which we had discount coupons:

2 regular bottles of vitamins: one Vitamin D and a Vitamin B complex,
a package of (3) women's socks,
a 2-pack of heavy duty aluminum foil, and
body lotion.

He handed me the receipt as we walked from the checkout register, and I was aghast: $62 dollars for 5 items!

I don't need to tell you that prices are rising. The U.S. dollar doesn't go very far anymore, and with its steady decline and the increasing commodity prices, our purchasing power continues to decrease and especially so for people with moderate and/or lesser incomes. For those interested in some of the data, here is an article from BusinessInsider.com which includes the following statement on the CPI (Consumer Price Index) versus the PPI (Producer Price Index).

JP Morgan's Charles Grum writes: "... Looking ahead, with recent spikes in commodity prices already reflected in the producer price index, we’ll be keeping a close watch to see if the gap will widen (potentially negative for grocer margins) or if retail prices will "catch up" to wholesale prices."

We are vigilant of what we spend and living within our means, and there is a time, and I think now especially so, when you must ask: do I really need this... should I spend the money. Most of the time when I ask that, the answer is no, we can get along without it.

In a world where some people live on $4 dollars or less a day, a ten to fifteen percent rise in food costs is catastrophic.

Reported in the Guardian.co.uk: UN's Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) called an emergency meeting for 24 September to discuss the food crisis. In Mozambique, riots broke out following the government's decision to raise bread prices by 30%, leaving seven people dead and hundreds injured.

From Johannesburg, the AP reports: A few pennies' increase in the price of a loaf of bread can mean the difference between getting by and going hungry — and erupting in anger — in the world's poorest countries.

Some may not be aware of much of this, for if your local networks are as ours, most of them take their cue and report the same thing from one channel to the next. Therefore, we spend several hours a day each morning looking at headlines and reading newspapers from around the world in order understand the global issues of which we are a part. And although there are those who choose to not hear about it, for us being aware allows us an opportunity to be forewarned and hopefully be better prepared for our future.

3 comments:

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Scary, isn't it? I have noticed that the price of eggs has gone down ---one of the few things...

We heard that week that our wonderful Govt. is allowing more corn to be used to make Ethanol ---so you know what that means. The price of our cereals will continue to rise.... It goes on and on and on. Yet--since we are on Social Security, we have no cost of living raise in 2011.....

I do worry about the elderly who ONLY live in Social Security --having to pay this much for necessities.

Hugs,
Betsy

Diana (Di) said...

Yes, Betsy, it is frightening since there is not much we can do except grow some of our own food and pay attention to only the essentials.

We too just noticed that the price of eggs has come down drastically. Part of that may be that following the massive egg recall, people stopped buying eggs, thus an effort to bring them back via cost cutting.

And COLA: it's been 2 years since there has been a cost of living adjustment for Soc Security. Amazing smoke and mirrors game as govt smooths the numbers, excludes food and energy, and there you have it... no increase in benefits.

Gayle said...

You are so right about the dollar not going as far. I used to not think about it when I bought something...now it seems my bank account is always empty and there is so much more I want (note: want not need). We only live one life and it bugs me I have to ration it. It wasn't always like this for us. Everything has stayed the same for us, but the cost of living has not.