In a report released Wednesday, the Economic Research Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture predicted that the price of eggs could go up by as much as 21% this year, leading the price increases of many foods.
The report, which is a measure of economy-wide inflation, looks at a number of food products and the percentage change in prices from month to month and over the course of the year.
The overall index for April increased by 0.6% from March, and is up 8.3% from 2021, according to the report.
The report said that food products are expected to increase in price by 9.4% the rest of the year and be above observed increases in 2020 and 2021.
Purchases from supermarkets and other food stores are predicted to rise between 7% and 8% this year, the same rate of increase predicted for food purchased at restaurants.
Meat, fish and poultry prices are expected to increase by 7% to 8%, dairy by 7% to 8%, fruit\and vegetables ise by 65.% to 7.5%, and fats and oils between 10% and 11%.
All 11 food categories in the report were revised upward this month, according to the agency, with no category expecting a decrease by year's end.
The large increase for eggs and a large increase in the price of poultry can be partly explained by an outbreak of avian influenza that reduced the egg-layer flock in the United States, driving a 10.3% price increase for eggs in April alone, the report said.
The disease affected some 38 million birds, raising the price of chickens and turkeys by 8.5% to 9.5% by the end of the year.
The consumer price index for food is compiled by measuring the average change over time in prices of food goods purchased by urban consumers.
It is taken from a representative ''basket of consumer goods'' and services.
The agency also looks at production considerations and the structure of the industries to be able to predict future price impacts, according to the agency.
Price predictions go out 12 to 18 months and can be used by farmers, processors, wholesalers, consumers and policymakers to make decisions about food production.
Overall, the inflation rate for the country is above 8%, a 40-year high.
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