Meat Prices Are Expected To Go Up

The cost of meat will have an impact on your wallet soon.

The US Department of Agriculture is estimating that this year meat prices will go up 4% and Texomans are already noticing a difference.

"I don't pay that much attention to it because I buy it because I need it but it's going up and I don't see it going down any time soon," said Monty Morrison.

And Dennis Conaway says, "I only have like $300 to spend for the whole month because I'm security and it's hard to buy food for me and my roomates because we like to eat so it's hard to budget."

This hike in meat prices is a result of a severe drought that struck farmlands across the nation last year. During the summer corn prices went up 60% in just two months. It so happens that corn is a common ingredient in animal feed and as a result the price of feed rose as well.

"Most of those feed lot rations, corn is 60% to 90% of the main ingredient in those rations so when you get a 60% increase in the commodity you're feeding those animals obviously the value of meat has to go up," said Mike McDonald, a county director of the Farm Service Agency.

When the price of feed rose many farmers reduced their livestock inventory. That created a shortage in meat supply, which is why you'll now have to pay more for it. McDonald says it will take 5 to 10 years for the meat market to recover and ultimately see meat prices go down.

"We need a cycle of several good corn crops in a row, we need rain down here in the plains to grow grass so that these ranchers can rebuild their herds," said McDonald.

Tanya De Jesus, Newschannel Six