Here’s what that July 4th cookout will cost

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A low angle view of a pushcart in the grocery store

INDIANAPOLIS – Hoosiers planning to host a Fourth of July cookout will be happy to know they will likely pay less at Indiana checkouts than they would in other parts of the country; however, there are three popular items that are priced above the national average.

According to Indiana Farm Bureau’s informal Market Basket Summer Cookout Survey featuring some of America’s summertime staples, Hoosiers can anticipate spending an average of $56.70 on a cookout to feed 10 people this summer, or $5.67 per person. That’s approximately 4.7% less than the U.S. average price of $5.95 per person.

The market basket shopping list included the following items: ground beef, cheese, hamburger buns, pork chops, chicken breasts, pork and beans, potato salad, strawberries, chips, ice cream, cookies and lemonade.

Three items on the shopping list are more expensive in Indiana than they are nationally, including ground beef, pork chops and cookies. The most prominent difference in price is for ground beef which is 18% (or $1.58) more expensive than the national average.

Cookout Items (INFB survey)2021 Indiana Total Cost% Difference from National Average
Ground Beef (2 lbs.) $10.5018%
Cheese (1 lb.) $2.88-30%
Cookies (13 oz bag) $3.723%
Ice cream (half gallon) $2.92-41%
Strawberries (2 pints) $4.03-7%
Chips (13 oz bag) $3.96-21%
Chicken Breast (2 lbs.) $6.43-4%
Pork Chops (3 lbs.) $12.949%
Pork and beans (32 oz) $1.73-21%
Hamburger Buns (1 package) $1.48-6%
Lemonade (2.5 qts.) $3.730%
Potato Salad (2.5 lbs.) $2.37-11%
TOTAL AVERAGE PER PERSON$5.67 -4.7%
TOTAL AVERAGE MEAL PRICE$56.70

While many food chain disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic have been resolved, there is still strong demand for some items causing prices to remain at a premium across the country. However, prices in Indiana are not as expensive as most of the U.S.

The Market Basket Summer Cookout Survey was conducted in mid-June by 27 volunteer shoppers from across the state who collected prices on specific food items from their local grocery stores. The Indiana survey results are included in the nationwide survey coordinated by the American Farm Bureau Federation.

“Despite lingering high prices due to COVID-19 supply chain disruptions, Indiana food prices are nearly $3 less than the national average for a cookout for 10 people,” Isabella Chism, INFB’s 2nd vice president and chair of the State Women’s Leadership Committee, said. “Hoosiers are excited to safely gather with family and friends after a year apart and can feed their guests on a budget if they purchase the more affordable items in our market basket, like chicken breasts, strawberries, potato salad and ice cream.”

Alternatively, most items on the shopping list came in less than the national average, most notably cheese and ice cream at 30% and 41% less, respectively, than the national average. With record-high milk and cheese production increasing, consumers continue to see lower cheese and ice cream prices this summer. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, U.S. milk output sharply increased, with Indiana up 12.6% in dairy production just last month. The price of chicken breasts, chips, pork and beans, strawberries, potato salad and hamburger buns also were less than the national average.

The Market Basket Summer Cookout Survey saw that the Midwest was the most affordable region of the country, with an average price of $56.83. The South at $59.53, the Northeast at $61.75, and the West came to an average of $62.41.

More details about AFBF’s summer market basket results can be found online.

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