July 4th Picnic Food Is Less Than $6 Per Person, Farm Group Says

Traditional picnic food for the July 4 Independence Day holiday in the U.S., including hot dogs, hamburgers and potato salad, will cost less than $6 a person, according to the American Farm Bureau Federation.

“Although retail-food prices have increased modestly over the past year or so, most Americans should be able to find summer picnic foods at close to the average prices found by our volunteer shoppers,” John Anderson, deputy chief economist at the Washington-based federation, said in a statement. The group didn’t provide comparable figures for previous years.

Grocery food costs will rise as much as 3.5 percent this year, including a gain of as much as 4 percent for meat, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said in a June 25 report. Beef prices in May were up 1.7 percent from a year earlier, while poultry was up 5.6 percent, the USDA said.

The average cost of feeding 10 people a typical July 4 meal will be $57.20, or $5.72 per person, the AFBF said, based on a survey of retail prices collected by 60 volunteer shoppers in 22 states. The 14 items on the list were ground beef for hamburgers, hot dogs, buns for both, cheese slices, pork spare ribs, potato salad, baked beans, corn chips, lemonade, chocolate milk, watermelon, ketchup and mustard.

To contact the reporter on this story: Marley DelDuchetto in Chicago at mdelduchett2@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Steve Stroth at sstroth@bloomberg.net

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