As the U.S. continues to grapple with rising inflation, a billionaire supermarket owner has warned that Americans will see even more food shortages and increasing prices in the coming weeks.
In a recent interview with Fox News, John Catsimatidis, president of New York’s Gristedes and D’Agostino Foods, predicts a 10 percent increase in food prices over the next 60 days. The upward trend in food prices will not reverse “anytime soon,” he warned.
“I see food prices going up tremendously… [CEOs] want to be ahead of the curve and the way they’re doing it is they’re dropping all promotions. They are dropping low-moving items,” Catsimatidis said. Food industry giants like Coca-Cola, Nabisco, and PepsiCo will prioritize increasing the price of their products, he added.
Companies like Procter & Gamble are facing a challenge when it comes to supplying toilet paper and other paper products, especially “in the suburbs and the inner city.” In the current market condition, manufacturers will be on the winning side.
“Why give away something when you don’t have to give it away and you make more margin? So I think that now these companies are going to have record profits in the third quarter,” Catsimatidis stated.
One of the major reasons for shortages in food and other products is the heavy accumulation of shipping containers at the two major California ports. These issues are expected to continue into the holiday season as well. The COVID-19 pandemic, lockdowns, vaccine mandates, and the energy crises in Europe and Asia-Pacific also contribute to the supply chain disruption.
To tackle this problem, the White House announced earlier this month that FedEx, UPS, and Walmart will be undertaking more staff shifts to ease the shipping issues. The Port of Los Angeles has committed to 24/7 shifts to step up the delivery of goods
According to recent data released by the Department of Labor, Americans are now shelling out more money for goods and services compared to a year ago. The consumer price index (CPI), a major inflation indicator that calculates how much Americans spend on goods and services, rose by around 0.4 percent in September 2021, which is an increase of 5.4 percent year-over-year.
When it comes to gas, Americans are paying about 42 percent more per gallon. They’re also paying 27 percent more for propane, firewood, and kerosene; 7.1 percent more for appliances; four percent more for coffee; 19 percent more for bacon; 10.5 percent more for eggs, poultry, fish, and meat; six percent more for peanut butter; and 5.2 percent more for electricity.
Catsimatidis also cited the doubling of oil to almost $80 a barrel for the increase in prices. This leads to a higher cost of transportation which is passed on directly to the consumer. He noted that oil was as low as $40 a barrel during the time of former President Donald Trump.
The billionaire accused the Biden administration of wanting to push up gas prices so high that people might consider switching to electric cars, a move that will be in Chinese interests since “all the batteries” for electric cars are manufactured in that country.