Inflation causes cafeteria prices to rise

Current inflation rates have caused the cafeteria prices to increase more than 25 percent, Tim Almy, Director of Quest Food Services, said. Last year alone, the inflation rate overall rose to 9.1 percent, the highest it has been since 1981, almy explained

Food prices overall have been increased due to bad weather, rising energy prices, and supply chain disruptions, Ana Swanson, writer for The New York Times, reported on Feb. 13. These issues left it challenging to put food products on the market, therefore increasing their prices. To combat inflated prices, Quest Foods has had to increase the prices on their foods, Almy explained.

 “Our [food prices] at South are based on what [Quest Food Services pays] for food, and the food costs have risen severely,” Almy said. “In the last year, some prices have gone up as much as 48 percent [and] our pricing has to reflect that.”

Danielle Wiener-Bronner, CNN Business writer, reported on Sept. 13 that food prices were increasing due to  global catastrophes such as the Russia-Ukraine war, global droughts, and the Covid-19. 

“Margarine spiked the most, up 7.3 percent,” Bronner reported. “Eggs were 2.9 percent more expensive and [the price of] sugar was 2.4 percent higher, while flour and bread edged up 2.2 percent. Canned fruit prices rose 3.4 percent while fresh vegetables got 1.2 percent pricier.”

South offers a reduced price lunch program for students who are not able to afford the regular pricing of school lunches; under this program they are either reduced in cost to $1 or free, Almy explained. You can gain access to this program by speaking to your respective counselor, he added. 

The new prices required students to change their eating habits, sophomore Sophia Abraham explained that due to new prices she opts for cheaper meals.

“Usually, I’ll buy something that is smaller, because it’s cheaper,” Abraham said. “Things like fries, pizza and chips are usually what I tend to opt for, if buying at all.”

Junior Keziah Jacob shared that the prices caused her to no longer eat her favorite meal, a turkey and cheese sandwich, because it was too expensive.

“[I buy food from the cafeteria] almost everyday,” Jacob said. “[The prices] have affected my decision to be healthy by giving me less options when buying food.”