Study says conventional food prices could outpace organic alternatives


Organic ground beef (minced meat) on a wooden cutting board in the kitchen.

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — If you have shopped for groceries lately, you may have noticed that foods with organic labels generally cost more than conventional counterparts.

However, a recent study suggests that could change in the future.

Organic foods generally carry higher prices due to greater costs in production and labor, as well as limited supply. But one study by MagnifyMoney found that on average, conventional food prices had increased eight times more than organic versions of the same products.

Researchers said prices for conventional boneless, skinless chicken breasts rose 43.8% on average since 2019. During that same time, organic varieties went down in price by 2.2%.

It’s not just poultry prices taking flight. Conventional broccoli had a 141% increase since 2019 compared to a 24% price hike in organic broccoli. Researchers also found that various conventional fruits and vegetables had increased approximately 13% while organic fruits and vegetables grew at an average of 2.8%.

Even though conventional food prices rose significantly, they still beat their organic counterparts for nearly every product in the study’s item sample. The study showed organic items still cost an average of 70.7% more than their conventional counterparts, although the difference in prices was typically less than one dollar for fruits and vegetables per pound/package/etc.

The difference in chicken pricing varied widely between conventional and organic products but organic varieties were generally higher in price.

The bottom line is that conventional prices have seen increases across the board, but organic counterparts still far outpace in price. The study did not estimate if or when conventional prices would overtake organic alternatives.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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