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Food Costs Follow Gas Price Rise

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POSTED: Monday, April 25, 2011 - 2:49pm

UPDATED: Tuesday, April 26, 2011 - 10:16am

EL PASO – We've been telling you about the rising gas prices, and how that's been hurting people at the pump. As of this afternoon, the average price of gas was at $3.70 a gallon in El Paso; and a penny more in Las Cruces. However, one economist said the pain doesn't stop at the pump. 

Food prices are expected to rise, even on top of the increases we've already been seeing. UTEP economist, Dr. Tom Fullerton, said that's because retailers and business owners pass on transportation and distribution costs.

“Milk prices have already gone up. There are a lot of dairy-producing regions throughout the country, but the dairy products have to be transported...and then get distributed,” said Dr. Fullerton.

Rising food prices leaves folks on a tight budget, with very few options. Maria Dominguez said she watches out for sales, and stocks up when she can, to save a few bucks.

“If something's on sale, I take advantage of that, and I'll take 4 or 5 things and stack up, so I don't have to worry about it,” said Dominguez.

So now, the question is: will prices eventually level off? Dr. Fullerton said that's a possibility.

“It could be, that prices are going to continue to increase into 2012 and 2013. A lot of that depends on what happens to production.”

Despite the doom and gloom surrounding food prices, Dr. Fullerton said there's a glimmer of hope for the people of El Paso.

“The local unemployment rate has started to decline,” stated Dr. Fullerton.

As of now, the jobless rate in El Paso is at 10 percent.

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More people need to grow food in the gradens or backyards, if lot more of us do it it will make a dent... what you don't need give it to people who can not grow..

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