Cost of Groceries Increases

The Kentucky Farm Bureau’s latest Marketbasket Survey shows an increase in food prices in Kentucky.

In the first quarter of 2011, the total cost of 40 basic grocery items in the commonwealth was nearly $115. That’s up $5.73 over the cost of the same items in the fourth quarter of 2010. In the first quarter of 2010, the same items cost $104.

The Kentucky Farm Bureau says 30 of the 40 items on the list have seen price increases this year. Bell peppers, corn oil, sirloin tip roast, butter and mild cheddar cheese are costing you more at the supermarket.

But vegetable oil, whole fryers, dill pickle slices, cut-up fryers and whole smoked hams have seen recent price declines.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates Americans spend around 10 percent of their disposable income on food each year. Of that money, 58 percent is used to purchase food that is consumed at home.

By Tony McVeigh

Veteran broadcast journalist Tony McVeigh has been covering Kentucky politics since 1986, reporting for Clear Channel Communications before joining Kentucky Public Radio in 2004. His stories are aired by seven KPR affiliates, whose signals blanket the Commonwealth and parts of surrounding states. McVeigh began his broadcasting career at WRFC in Athens, Georgia, while earning a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from the University of Georgia. He has extensive anchor/reporter experience, including stints with South Carolina Network and Georgia Radio News Service in Atlanta. In 2007 and 2008, McVeigh was named Best Radio Reporter in the Kentucky Associated Press Awards. He also picked up consecutive AP Awards for Best Political Coverage. McVeigh won four Kentucky AP Awards in 2009, six in 2010 - including Best Political Coverage and Best Hard News Feature - and three in 2011. His coverage of the 2007 Kentucky governor's race topped the Political Reporting category of the Society of Professional Journalists Green Eyeshade Awards of 2008. In 2009, McVeigh placed second in Courts and Law Reporting in the Atlanta-based competition for journalists in 11 Southern states. McVeigh is also the proud recipient of an Individual Liberty Award from the Kentucky Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. The Brunswick, Georgia, native is a die-hard UGA football fan who enjoys photography, astronomy, live music, hiking Kentucky's Red River Gorge and exploring the state's beautiful back roads. McVeigh and his big, fat, black cat Simon, reside in Frankfort, KY.