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Here Is How Wal Mart Is Squeezing Every Last Ounce Of Decaffeinated Inflation

Tyler Durden's picture


Some interesting insights on how even Wal-Mart is doing its best to mask inflation by penny pinching here, there and soon, everywhere. Below is an example of 20% inflation in the span of a few weeks, which will most certainly not be captured in government statistics of food inflation. Additionally, with cotton just opening 470 ticks higher and 30 away from limit up, we hope readers took our advice from a month ago.

Courtesy of Survival Blog

Carlos in the U.P. wrote: "I noted with interest that the Wal-Mart I shop at had cleared the shelves of "Great Value" brand coffee in 39 oz cans for about 2 weeks. Today the new can appeared, with the following differences: 1.) Can is now 33.9 oz, down from 39 oz. Also conspicuously missing is the conversion of 2lb, 7oz therefore no comparison in pounds is easily made. 2.) Price for this smaller can is up from $9.88 to $10.48, by my rustic math an approximate 20% increase! 3.) Contents of can are no longer 'Premium Columbian' Decaffeinated. Now labeled '100% Classic Decaf'"

Unfortunately, we were unable to recreate a similar product SKU on Walmart's online catalog, although having seen comparable price masking gimmicks at local stores and for far more egregious inflation adjustments, we are confident this is not an isolated ploy to pass on surging input prices. We invite readers to share comparable stories of under the radar price pass throughs to the sheeple slaughterhouse (before and after pictures are welcome). We will compile all the responses and maybe even start a Zero Hedge inflation Crowdsourced Price Index, a/k/a a real CPI.

h/t Kyle


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Sun, 10/24/2010 - 22:42 | 674244 Midas
Midas's picture

A great idea.  The problem is finding consistency.  If Wally world substitutes Brazilian coffee with something grown in Iowa how do you account for the difference?  I think our best bet is just to track all commodities.

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:20 | 674310 septicshock
septicshock's picture

The price seems to be inflated by six percent not 20 percent.

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:33 | 674328 Astute Investor
Astute Investor's picture

6% increase in price of smaller container

13% reduction in container size

1.06 * 1.13 = 1.198 or 20% increase per ounce of coffee

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 01:02 | 674427 Pondmaster
Pondmaster's picture

Ice cream - AT ALL STORES - ditched the half gallon square carton for the rounded corner carton = 1.75 quarts - same price as before .  Was 32 oz .for 5$ ,  now 28 oz. for 5$ = .0875 % increase in price - not a bad pocket filling scam . Hey ,do Fed include ice cream in their inflation fraudstistics?

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 02:43 | 674485 Bananamerican
Bananamerican's picture

12.5% increase....stealth package reconfiguration has been going on for quite a while now...I wonder how ridiculous it's going to get....

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 09:11 | 674745 Mad Mad Woman
Mad Mad Woman's picture

Package reconfiguration been going on for years now. It will get even more ridiculous.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 03:29 | 674512 GS is short Gold
GS is short Gold's picture

Yup, orange juice vendors are doing the same thing. The longlasting standard juice carton of 64oz is now being quietly replaced with 59oz cartons. They are virtually impossible to tell apart but that's a quick 8% inflation pop as prices haven't decreased. 

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 09:21 | 674773 curbyourrisk
curbyourrisk's picture

Yeah, the big 96 oz. container is now 89 ounces.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 06:42 | 674598 Blano
Blano's picture

Personally, in my neck of the woods I haven't even seen 1.75 quarts for a while....more like 1.5.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 10:55 | 674977 johnhampson
johnhampson's picture

Price has gone from 25.33 cents per ounce to 30.91, up by 5.58 cents.  5.58/25.33 = 22.03%

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 00:07 | 674374 Mad Max
Mad Max's picture

The price seems to be inflated by six percent not 20 percent.

You're just the kind of customer Walmart is looking for!

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 00:15 | 674390 Whats that smell
Whats that smell's picture

It is also lower quality coffee as the label no longer says 100% Colombian.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 10:27 | 674922 whatsinaname
whatsinaname's picture

good for the American waistlines ?

bad for diabetes / obesity drug company CEOs ?


Mon, 10/25/2010 - 06:17 | 674584 bobbymak880
bobbymak880's picture

1.  the difference is profit!!!

2.  the new blend probably contains Vietnamese robusta bean (read: inferior).

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 08:17 | 674672 cossack55
cossack55's picture

Same is true with the GV and Max house 12 oz jars of instant have been replaced with 8 oz jars.  The SKu labels attached to shelves will provide price/oz.  up about 20 cents. oz.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 09:56 | 674839 Hephasteus
Hephasteus's picture

You can't grow coffee in iowa. Coffee needs sun and A LOT of it. Drinking it is the best way to kill elephants as stuff elephants eat gets mowed down to plant coffee.

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 22:45 | 674248 tmosley
tmosley's picture

Cotton is likely up due to storms wrecking much of the cotton crop across the south plains.  We were on track for a bumper crop this year, but this nasty storm came along in the middle of harvest time and dropped 2-4" of rain, along with hail up to 3.5 in in diameter.

We were on track for a record breaking bumper crop, but now we have lost at least half the crop, maybe more (some was already harvested, about half of the fields on my way to work were already picked).

Some farmers are likely to go under because of this.  Lucky ones have already harvested, and will make a killing off of the  rapidly rising prices.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 01:04 | 674429 Pondmaster
Pondmaster's picture

Since when do farmers , especially in the south , make any money on any crops , other than tobacco ?

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 01:21 | 674445 Sean7k
Sean7k's picture

We subsidize the growing and sometimes the non growing of crops- especially corn and soybeans. 

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 10:55 | 674976 DaveyJones
DaveyJones's picture


Mon, 10/25/2010 - 11:10 | 675023 MachoMan
MachoMan's picture

I hope you were joking about farmers making money...  if you know what the hell you're doing and don't get bitten by a string of ridiculous bad luck, you're in there like swimwear.  The only people with enough cash to pay for mcmansions, at least around here, are often times the farmers...  penny pinchers to the T...  and fairly sensible/conservative in business decisions (if they don't know about it, they don't do it).  Of course, they have the money because they don't go chasing mcmansions...  (funny how that works isn't it?).

The small farmers have all been crowded out due to economies of scale...  now, anything less than 6000+ acres of rice/bean farming is considered a small farmer...  with many over the 10k range...

If worse comes to worse, you can turn into an "insurance farmer".

Now, there is obviously less profit potential in simply owning the land...  and virtually zero if it's financed to any large extent.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 11:46 | 675106 FEDbuster
FEDbuster's picture


Sun, 10/24/2010 - 22:45 | 674249 arm50
arm50's picture

how about a penny's intrinsic value.

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:48 | 674283 Whats that smell
Whats that smell's picture

Here you are:

There is a link to a good article on that page:,1518,724140,00.html

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:11 | 674289 cxl9
cxl9's picture

Interestingly, a circulating US nickel (1946-2010) now has a melt value of .06 and has been steadily rising. This would seem to be a good inflation/deflation hedge. Trade in $100K of FRNs for rolls of nickels; transport and store. In the case of inflation/dollar depreciation, you can eventually just exchange them for their higher melt value. In the event of commodity price deflation, you can trade them back in for FRNs. It's basically a one-way bet. Minus fuel and storage costs, of course.



Mon, 10/25/2010 - 00:55 | 674421 Green Leader
Green Leader's picture

Do you really want LOTS of nickels?

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 01:39 | 674463 Burnbright
Burnbright's picture

Or you could get copper pennies, 1981 and prior and make 250% instantly and rising. 

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 07:20 | 674618 prophet
prophet's picture

Got a bead on the total value of all 1981 pennies in "circulation"?

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 22:48 | 674254 Failure to Comm...
Failure to Communicate's picture

Walgreens, of all places, is holding the line on coffee for now.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 00:38 | 674410 Arkadaba
Arkadaba's picture

Two weeks ago at my local big name grocery (Canada-based), I noticed that a can of illy coffee had dropped from 14.99 to 9.99. I have no clue why there would have been such a big drop in price (and it didn't appear to be a sale). 

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 00:46 | 674415 lizzy36
lizzy36's picture

It was an error on the pricing. You should have loaded up.

Illy is 16.99 a tin here (canada-based, as well).

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 01:00 | 674425 Arkadaba
Arkadaba's picture

I bought a few cans ;)

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 22:51 | 674257 Strongbad
Strongbad's picture

Someone should start the WCPI - the Walmart Consumer Price Index.  :)


Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:00 | 674272 Harbourcity
Harbourcity's picture

I like the idea! :)

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 11:51 | 675123 FEDbuster
FEDbuster's picture

Winchester 100 rounds 9mm $23.97 up from 20.97 six months ago (and up from $9.97 six years ago).  Same with the Federal 50 rounds 9mm $10.47 up from $9.47 a month ago.

Quart of Great Value half and half was $1. about six months ago, now $1.68.

"Roll Up" prices!!

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 12:06 | 675177 His Dudeness
His Dudeness's picture

All quiet on the Wal-Mart front...

No toilet paper price update... hmmm, and I thought that was nicotine stains on your fingers...

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 12:58 | 675354 FEDbuster
FEDbuster's picture

Best everyday price on TP @ Sam's Club, but you can do better with sales at grocery stores.

If your looking for some fun after trick or treating this Sunday night, you can watch the 43 million on food stamps que up at Walmart waiting for their cards to recharge.  Of course most of them will be taking their kids to the "rich" areas to load up on their candy supplies for the next few months.  Plus, if they wait till Monday, they can use the food stamp cards to buy bags of candy half price.  The people of Walmart:

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 13:20 | 675428 FEDbuster
FEDbuster's picture

Best everyday price on TP @ Sam's Club, but you can do better with sales at grocery stores.

If your looking for some fun after trick or treating this Sunday night, you can watch the 43 million on food stamps que up at Walmart waiting for their cards to recharge.  Of course most of them will be taking their kids to the "rich" areas to load up on their candy supplies for the next few months.  Plus, if they wait till Monday, they can use the food stamp cards to buy bags of candy half price.  The people of Walmart:

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 22:59 | 674268 prophet
prophet's picture

"took our advice"

= were able to formulate a profitable strategy based on our news and information.

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:01 | 674274 MrSteve
MrSteve's picture

Costco's 3 pound Columbian coffee went from $9.99 to 11.99, close enough to 20% straight increase per my most recent purchase.

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:15 | 674294 swmnguy
swmnguy's picture

Yep, I saw that too.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 00:01 | 674367 dkny
dkny's picture

Any comments on Costco's Scott toilet paper?

I can't remember how it was a couple of months ago, but when I picked a pack recently, it seemed like it had less rolls and for an extra dollar or two. (now 36 rolls, and I vaguely remember over 40 previously)

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 00:09 | 674379's picture

Rite-Aid has Scott 12 packs for 7.49 this weekend. Stopped by and it's out of stock. I asked for a raincheck for 12 12 packs. When the clerk wrote the raincheck the price reflected an addition 2 dollar discount at the register for a price of 5.49 per 12 pack. I upped my request to 24 12 packs.

Maxwell House coffee is now $10 for 34 oz at the local grocery but about once a month they have a sale at $6 at which times I buy 2 - 4 cans.

Big attic.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 12:00 | 675156 Strider52
Strider52's picture

I almost screamed on the commodius when I went to reload the scott TP on the roller. It was skinnier! I grabbed a back-up pack of Scott, yep, it was shorter!  They went from 4.5 inches wide to 4.1. Looks silly on the roller...I think they gave up on this recently due to public outrage.


Mon, 10/25/2010 - 12:14 | 675201 His Dudeness
His Dudeness's picture

"I almost screamed on the commodius when I went to reload the scott TP on the roller. "

Phew! You have to be careful there!

Just think what your neighbors would think if they heard you shout: 'IT'S POINT 4 INCHES SHORTER!!!'



Mon, 10/25/2010 - 14:20 | 675684 DaveyJones
DaveyJones's picture

even worse when he said "let me try another one!"

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:02 | 674277 RobotTrader
RobotTrader's picture

Kind of an odd chart...

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 01:36 | 674458 Nolsgrad
Nolsgrad's picture

looks like a cup w/handle forming to me.

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:04 | 674279 duo
duo's picture

Wal-mart:  always a smaller package....always.

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:15 | 674298 swmnguy
swmnguy's picture


Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:17 | 674302 MarketTruth
MarketTruth's picture

HOURS of fun:

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:42 | 674338 hedgeless_horseman
hedgeless_horseman's picture


For We Sell Less.

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:14 | 674286 bob_dabolina
bob_dabolina's picture

Remember that ridiculous mania going on with rice before the stock market crashed?

That was crazy. People were running around buying rice like they would never see it again.

Ha. I remember this guy I know who doesn't even eat rice and he was buying rice///just in case. Deep down I think thats when I realized how terribly mismanaged our economy had become, and the extent of the imbalances.


Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:17 | 674303 swmnguy
swmnguy's picture

I bought a couple giant bags of rice then.  Just finished off the last of it recently.  Kind of like in the last years of the USSR.  If you saw a line you got in it and bought whatever it was they had, even if it was just useless fake sponges, becuase you never knew if you'd ever be able to find them again.

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:10 | 674287 Azwethinkweiz
Azwethinkweiz's picture

don't forget boys and girls, bills [USD] are composed of 25% linen and 75% cotton

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:15 | 674295 IrrationalMan
IrrationalMan's picture

gold bugs might actually be able to use it for toilet paper then.

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:15 | 674297 bob_dabolina
bob_dabolina's picture

95% digital code...5% tangible.

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:12 | 674290 buzzsaw99
buzzsaw99's picture

WalMart is doing what they all did years ago. High on some stuff, cheaper on others. Lately they have been way high on a lot more stuff. The neighborhood grocery is beating them big on some stuff, that never used to happen. We are back to shopping five different stores.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 01:11 | 674437 Pondmaster
Pondmaster's picture

buzzsaw -

My wife has pretty much shopped at 3-5 different stores for the last 20 yrs . There are huge differences in price - and QUALITY. Meijer , Walmart , Family Dollar , Aldi's , Costco,Kmart . 


Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:15 | 674300 zaknick
zaknick's picture

"The high office of President has been used to foment a plot to destroy the American's freedom, and before I leave office I must inform the citizen of his plight."
--John F. Kennedy, at Columbia University, 10 days before his assassination.


too breathtaking not to pass on

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:20 | 674311 cxl9
cxl9's picture

Many references to this fictitious speech exist in assassination theorist material. Supposedly, the President was discussing changes in the Federal Reserve and the gold standard, and this topic was somehow linked to his assassination. Others also claim he said, "The high office of President has been used to foment a plot to destroy American freedom, and before I leave office I must inform the citizen of his plight."  But the simple fact is that President John F. Kennedy did not speak at Columbia University in November of 1963.

But hey, thanks for playing.

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:34 | 674332 Azwethinkweiz
Azwethinkweiz's picture

haven't you ever seen the matrix? geez, there is NO spoon!

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:35 | 674333 zaknick
zaknick's picture

Whatever, troll:


Executive Order 11110 AMENDMENT OF EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 10289


By virtue of the authority vested in me by section 301 of title 3 of the United States Code, it is ordered as follows:

Section 1. Executive Order No. 10289 of September 19, 1951, as amended, is hereby further amended-

By adding at the end of paragraph 1 thereof the following subparagraph (j):

(j) The authority vested in the President by paragraph (b) of section 43 of the Act of May 12,1933, as amended (31 U.S.C.821(b)), to issue silver certificates against any silver bullion, silver, or standard silver dollars in the Treasury not then held for redemption of any outstanding silver certificates, to prescribe the denomination of such silver certificates, and to coin standard silver dollars and subsidiary silver currency for their redemption

and --

Byrevoking subparagraphs (b) and (c) of paragraph 2 thereof.

Sec. 2. The amendments made by this Order shall not affect any act done, or any right accruing or accrued or any suit or proceeding had or commenced in any civil or criminal cause prior to the date of this Order but all such liabilities shall continue and may be enforced as if said amendments had not been made.

John F. Kennedy The White House, June 4, 1963.


There is no mystery; there are only cold hard facts.

Sat, 11/06/2010 - 16:05 | 705489 TheGoodDoctor
TheGoodDoctor's picture

I'm not sure what the point is here. It looks as if there may have been silver in the Treasury, but I would now say no more.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 10:42 | 674948 TheGreatPonzi
TheGreatPonzi's picture

I don't know if Kennedy was in Columbia on that day or not, but if the 'FED and gold standard' story is true, then the forger who invented this conspiracy theory is far smarter and more educated than the average conspirationist, who hasn't a single clue on the monetary system.

You know what? It may be true. The FED is basically the master of the world (and that's raw economic facts, not a conspiracy). So assassinating people might not be out of reach.

And if this speech at Columbia were true, it would surprise me to hear federal officials acknowledge this incredible speech. Thus, this is unprovable. I don't trust the government more than conspiracy theorists.


Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:25 | 674324 i-dog
i-dog's picture

There is so much disinformation spread by all sides on the 'net that you need to look into each of these so-called "quotations" before either believing them or spreading them at face value.

A quick investigation of this one turns up 2 very interesting analyses:

Just sayin'.

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:16 | 674301 digalert
digalert's picture

The Wally World I occasionally go to has completely revamped their coffee space with all new packages and blends. My Folgers instant, moved to make room for all the new WalMart brand crap, has gone from $7.88 to $8.77.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 01:36 | 674457 saulysw
saulysw's picture

"... has gone from $7.88 to $8.77."




(You head it rear first people!)

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:19 | 674307 wafflehead
wafflehead's picture

forget buying anything from supermarket places. Just go to Costcos and farmer's market

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:20 | 674308 Strongbad
Strongbad's picture

Call me a hippie but I shop at the farmer's market instead.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 00:14 | 674387's picture

Yasgur's farm?

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 00:18 | 674393 Strongbad
Strongbad's picture


Mon, 10/25/2010 - 02:50 | 674497 Bananamerican
Bananamerican's picture

we've got to get ourselves back to the

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 11:11 | 675026 MrSteve
MrSteve's picture

Max Yasgur, show proper respect!

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 04:02 | 674523 Djirk
Djirk's picture

Hippie  : )

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:28 | 674319 Caviar Emptor
Caviar Emptor's picture

There can be little doubt that we're in the early innings of a wicked inflation in raw materials. But the entire universe of business cost inputs is already rocketing across the globe. The numbers already speak for themselves. 

But biflation is still the bigger picture in the US and UK: as cost of living and business cost inputs rocket higher, we've got a brand new housing double dip, unsettling levels of ongoing job losses and offshoring, stagnant incomes and reduced retirement benefits. 

Look for the dual trends to continue and even accelerate in the coming quarter. The secret is that soaring costs can't be fully passed on to a constrained consumer. Vast un/under_employment will make it difficult. So look for small business to languish badly in the US under the weight of harsh margin erosion.

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:29 | 674326 TexasAggie
TexasAggie's picture

I bought a gal of milk today, the same brand as on 7 Oct and the cost today was $3.08 vs 2.98.

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:34 | 674330 Caviar Emptor
Caviar Emptor's picture

I've already read reports that beef production is fast becoming too cost-inefficent to sustain at present levels. Pricing power can't cover input cost increases.

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:45 | 674344 hedgeless_horseman
hedgeless_horseman's picture

It's times like these that I am happy we raise our own beef and milk our own cow.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 01:03 | 674428 wafflehead
wafflehead's picture

how much for a fresh gallon of milk??

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 09:03 | 674731 nonclaim
nonclaim's picture

You are trying to frame him, right? In the land of the free you have to buy shares on the cow and collect milk as dividend. Trading raw milk is illegal.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 09:52 | 674832 hedgeless_horseman
hedgeless_horseman's picture

It has been claimed that raw milk is the most traded contraband in these United States.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 00:48 | 674418 SHRAGS
SHRAGS's picture

Producers go bust, supply drops, prices up.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 14:28 | 675706 DaveyJones
DaveyJones's picture

there is no way we will continue to keep the beef prices at the artificially low levels they have been since we mechanized the huge scale soy/corn cargo train feeding system. Way too much oil goes into one cow

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 06:51 | 674600 Blano
Blano's picture

That's some pretty fancy milk you're buying there, cowboy.  I've been paying 1.99 at Kroger for a while now with a rare change to the upside on occasion.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 08:44 | 674697 -Michelle-
-Michelle-'s picture

They're probably pricing that as a loss leader.  $1.99 milk gets a lot of people in the door and up the impulse aisles.

Your Kroger probably stocks the milk in a back corner, right?

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 11:40 | 675093 duder
duder's picture

I pay $7 for a gallon of raw milk straight from a small family farm. Why?

The price hasn't changed in two years. I don't think they would have the heart to raise the price unless they really had to - and I'm sure they would offer profuse apologizes and explanations. It's different when you look your customers in the eye every week when making that exchange.

On the other hand, for that same reason I wouldn't have the heart to refuse to buy if they did raise the price. They could definitely make more money off us if they wanted, but they don't... weird, right? How did a sense of humanity sneak its way into a market exchange?

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 06:37 | 674339 Mercury
Mercury's picture

I love the ZH CPI idea although if gasoline keeps running up you won't need any pictures or charts to depict consumer inflation.

Sun, 10/24/2010 - 23:47 | 674351 Phil
Phil's picture

Oregonian Newspaper (owned by the NYT) Home Delivery Monthy was $17.35 Now $19.50 = 12.4% inc

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 00:00 | 674365 Whats that smell
Whats that smell's picture

It sure seems the prices of everthing needed is shooting up quickly, of course the Ipad maxi went down by $2 or something.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 09:20 | 674767 Mad Mad Woman
Mad Mad Woman's picture

"iPad Maxi"......sounds like a new brand of sanitary napkin. LOL

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 00:05 | 674371 Vampyroteuthis ...
Vampyroteuthis infernalis's picture

I am sure these price increases are helping out those who are in economic trouble. The unemployed or deep in debt. Helicopter Ben and Timmay told us so. </sarcasm>

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 00:10 | 674382 bankonzhongguo
bankonzhongguo's picture

Now lots of folks don't know it, but Johnson County, KS - say Overland Park - a KC suburb is one of the most affluent places in the country.  High end grocery stores abound - shopping like Rodeo Drive, yada yada.  Now then, here is midtown KCMO - less than 10 miles away, pretty close to some government projects, heavy section-8 housing - tough place at times.  You could walk into some grocer on The Paseo around midtown and pay $1.50 -$2 for a can of Campbell's Chicken Noodle Soup in a part of town where hard working people barely making it have small incomes.  Yet you could buy the same can of food in Overland Park for 88 cents all day long.  Food Corporations are not dumb, nor are food distribution operators like Wal-mart.  The poor have less disposable income, so their money is naturally going to necessities.  When times are bad the necessities price goes up.  That is why during the Shoah a sandwich at the train station could cost you DM100.  The last glass of water in a desert will cost you a gold brick and worth every cent.  After your 99 weeks are up, that 5 dollars in your pocket is going to have to last.  Food, clothing, shelter.  Its all going up, until Uncle Obama takes the Fannie inventory and hands it out with the government cheese.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 11:29 | 675065 Lucky Guesst
Lucky Guesst's picture

Maybe the ghetto grocery has expenses that the designer grocery doesn't. Like security, higher insurance, theft and vandalism. Then again the management of the designer grocery can probably do more harm with a password and a routing number!

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 00:18 | 674392 piceridu
piceridu's picture

Has anyone bought ice cream lately? What happened to a half gallon? It looks almost the same and cost more but take a look at how many ounces you get in a Breyer's carton

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 00:40 | 674412 pussfeller
pussfeller's picture

This has nothing to do with inflation, its the result of a bad harvest in a few countries due to weather, and on top of that, speculation in coffee.


In fact, I think it was discussed here awhile back.


Isn't the type of price increases we are looking for due to no other factors other than systematic, ie, due to the lower purchase price of the dollar, or thru there being more money, period? Not because of weather, or natural fluctuations in supply?


And yes, you should buy your food at the farmers market, or from real farmers. It's more expensive, but most of us eat to much anyways. 



Mon, 10/25/2010 - 01:04 | 674431 Green Leader
Green Leader's picture

"This has nothing to do with inflation, its the result of a bad harvest in a few countries due to weather, and on top of that, speculation in coffee."

This has to do with chemtrails & weather modification. Be warned.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 01:07 | 674434 i-dog
i-dog's picture

Just posted by Denninger (

they're six hour changes in price. These are all things you need to buy, either directly or indirectly.


Oil, up 1%.

Wheat, up 1.49%.

Corn, up 2.05%. (Oh yeah, and ethanol on your gas will soon be mandated to be 15%, not 10%.)

Soy, up 1.5%.

Rough Rice, up 1.51%.

Oats, up a stunning 4.27% (!)

Cotton is lock-limit up 500 ticks. To be fair there's a crop disruption related to Cotton, which is adding to the problem. Dollar debasement, of course, isn't helping.


Remember, these are all soft commodities we produce right here at home. These aren't import prices, they're home-grown products (excepting oil, of course.)

And they're moving - at anywhere from double to eight times the devaluation in the dollar.


Bernanke's "inflation target" of 2% a year was just met - literally - in less than six hours.



Mon, 10/25/2010 - 01:18 | 674440 Arkadaba
Arkadaba's picture

The clip he posted from 60 minutes was also sobering - nothing I didn't know (a friend in his 50's just landed a full-time job a week before his extended benefits ran out - one of the lucky ones) but still a good clip:


Mon, 10/25/2010 - 08:13 | 674668 CPL
CPL's picture

Wow is that ever depressing.  Great report though.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 01:08 | 674436 Green Leader
Green Leader's picture

The whole roasted coffee bean brand I use was purchased by Coca-Cola, according to the supermarket guy. They changed the beans for lower quality. Eventually I will grow my own.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 00:57 | 674423 No One
No One's picture

It's not just WalMart. Earlier this week, I needed some sugar. So I go to the local grocery store, and grab a bag of sugar. Didn't notice it until I came home, but it was now a 4 lb. bag, not a 5 lb. bag of C&H. 

Of course, I think the 4 lb. bag was the same price as the 5 lb just a few weeks ago. 

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 08:48 | 674707 -Michelle-
-Michelle-'s picture

5lb bags of sugar have been extinct for a while.  A couple of years ago, the grocery stores around here were running what seemed like a sugar competition.  Every week, somebody was offering a 5lb bag for a little over a dollar.  I stocked up then, probably around 150 pounds total.

We've still got 4 bags from that spree.  Since then, I've bought sugar by the bucket.  I'm thinking it's time for more buckets.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 09:50 | 674826 romanko
romanko's picture

I want to be your dentist!

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 10:30 | 674929 -Michelle-
-Michelle-'s picture

Sounds awful, doesn't it?  However, I bake from scratch and I also used a large portion of that to make jam and put up some other things.  Sugar goes quickly when you're using it for home canning.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 01:00 | 674426 gwar5
gwar5's picture

I found some premium coffee at $1.75 per pound at an overstock store 2 weeks ago. I took all they had. I put 30 lbs In the freezer.

I do like coffee in the morning. I'll pick up more if they get more.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 01:11 | 674438 Comrade de Chaos
Comrade de Chaos's picture

That actually explains the Target's strategy of carrying more food stuffs - easier to rise prices.


Mon, 10/25/2010 - 01:25 | 674450 Lucky Guesst
Lucky Guesst's picture

I LOVE it here. I am now confident that there are almost no mothers of school aged children on ZH. COFFEE!!!??? It took bleeping coffee to necessarily skyrocket to get your attention? LOL!

Back in the spring I knew the quality of life was headed down when I thought I wondered onto the set of a sequel called Honey I shrank the CEREAL. Check out the size of Golden Grahams why don't ya!!!

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 04:12 | 674531 1984
1984's picture

You call yourself a mother, feeding all that over-processed, sugar-laden shit to your kids?


Mon, 10/25/2010 - 10:03 | 674863 Lucky Guesst
Lucky Guesst's picture

Your right, I should be more like all the mothers that ship their kids out every morning without breakfast to the school cafeteria on the subsidized obesity plan!

I wish I could upload because the menu is pretty bad. It sparked an awesome family conversation once when my son joked that he doesn't understand how poor people get fat. He's only 9 but he knows better to ever say that outside of our home. (Something poor Jaun's mother should of taught him-jk)

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 12:18 | 675212 ATTILA THE WIMP

Please read this link

Sugar was replaced with something much worse, corn syrup with sulfite.

I suffered from piples and headaches for 55 years until I found out I was allergic to sulfite. I stopped eating sulfite and my pimples and headaches vanished.

Sulfite is a terrible toxin for many people and causes asthma, obesity and other dreadful stuff. Please read.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 06:32 | 674593 TheDriver
TheDriver's picture

You're spot on. What's more, while the height and width of the cereal boxes didn't change, the depth was trimmed. As a result, you pick up what appears to be the same box of cereal you've always purchased but with less product.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 11:18 | 675041 MrSteve
MrSteve's picture

You mean the note "Contents may have settled during shipping" is a FRAUD???!? I've been reading that for fifty years!

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 01:50 | 674467 saulysw
saulysw's picture

I work in the FMCG (Fast Moving Consumer Goods) industry, and was being told the other day about a supermarket store with trial electronic shelf price displays, all linked to the store computer. The idea is that they can change the price in all stores, across the country, in a second without reprinting price tickets (which takes time, costs and people have to do it). Sounds like just the thing for a hyperinflationary world....the price may change as you stand there.

Also, the JIT (Just-in-time) delivery system means stock levels in warehouses are measured in days. An "unusual" run on store stock at any time could empty shelves very quickly. It has the appearance of being a never ending supply - but it isn't.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 02:54 | 674499 sushi
sushi's picture

the price may change as you stand there.

How about if the price changes between the time you put the product in your cart and ring out at the register?

How about we get together and patent this and make ourselves rich!!

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 02:05 | 674476 glenlloyd
glenlloyd's picture

I buy coffee at sprawlmart when i run out and it's late, the coffee I buy went from $3.44 / 12oz bag to $3.87 / 12 oz bag to $4.12 / 12 oz bag....all in no more than 2 months. I don't buy anything else there so I can't say what else has risen to me that's pretty shocking.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 02:23 | 674481 working class dog
working class dog's picture

Gillette track razor blades outrageouly high,


Mon, 10/25/2010 - 02:33 | 674486 The LD
The LD's picture

Six months ago 3-lb value packs of bacon were about $9. Now they are "on sale" for $11.99

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 02:59 | 674502 sushi
sushi's picture

I've seen a lot of this. A canned good which once sold at .59 is now ON SALE for .89 and you save .22 off the regular price. A little sign right there on the shelf tells you exactly how much you saved by paying more.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 02:38 | 674490 Hook Line and S...
Hook Line and Sphincter's picture

Inflation is like a really good personal trainer, what's wrong with all of you?

Soy - you shouldn't be eating this crap, it's an estrogen mimicker that will make you grow tits if your a man.

Ice cream- whaaaa, your ice cream costs more!

Coffee -  a non-necessity once you have weaned yourself.

Corn - Just what my GM craving body needs more of.

Oil - get a bike, lose some weight. Get a motorcycle and get there twice as fast.

Milk - for goodness sake, all mammals lactate. Get creative. Dogs, cats, even the wolverine can produce quality nutritious milk!

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 02:59 | 674500 Bananamerican
Bananamerican's picture

wolverine milk is amazing if you live long enough to drink it

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 03:03 | 674503 sushi
sushi's picture

Couldn't agree more. The real problem is the number of sexual acts required to promote lactation.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 09:21 | 674775 Maos Dog
Maos Dog's picture

"Soy - you shouldn't be eating this crap, it's an estrogen mimicker that will make you grow tits if your a man."

This is no joke, I got really sick eating this shit while on a training program.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 04:55 | 674560 bookwurm
Mon, 10/25/2010 - 05:14 | 674568 oh_bama
oh_bama's picture

100% suport the idea of a real CPI, but I guess when properly adjusted for seasonalities and stuff, you will have CPI + 1.25 -1.5%.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 06:00 | 674579 John McCloy
John McCloy's picture

Wanna talk about inflation? 

Go to your local CVS and buy a pack of MilkyWay, Snickers Fun Size bars. Well evidently this is the first time I have seen one since it is Halloween and all in quite awhile but the funsize bars are easily 25% smaller this year. I asked my girlfriend If I was imagining thinks and she said no they are completely different this year.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 09:58 | 674847 rpboxster
rpboxster's picture

the quality of the chocolate has degraded, as well.  I can't even eat Hersheys or Mars "chocolate" any more.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 07:07 | 674608 sudzee
sudzee's picture

I have been calling it TRI or " Toilet Roll Inflation " for years. Outside gets smaller, then cardboard center gets larger, then double rolls come out with the old original size and the final indignity is the individual sheets have just lately gotten smaller. This is just bullshit. I can no longer poke my finger thru the sheet to wipe my ass with my finger cause there ain't enough paper left to wipe my finger. Now I have to use 2 sheets. And yes, with prices going so high it definately will be cheaper to wipe with a dollar bill.  

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 07:57 | 674649 Bigger Dickus
Bigger Dickus's picture

"to wipe my ass with my finger"

dude... that's just wrong

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 09:43 | 674813 theprofromdover
theprofromdover's picture

...the military way....

tear a tiny hole in the folded corner, and use your imagination from there on in.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 07:16 | 674611 Incubus
Incubus's picture

Ugh... I see some of the stuff that you people are complaining about the prices of, and it tells me enough about you.  I thought the average person at ZH knew better.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 09:42 | 674810 MayIMommaDogFac...
MayIMommaDogFace2theBananaPatch's picture

See ya later, Freud.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 07:26 | 674621 ZeroPoint
ZeroPoint's picture

My mother mentioned to me that at Wal-Mart the traditional 5 lb. bag of flour is now gone, replaced by a 4 lb. at the same price. That's 20% right there.



Mon, 10/25/2010 - 07:51 | 674634 CPL
CPL's picture

I noticed that too.  I end up buying the 20 pound bag to recoup the difference (yeah we acutally will use it all in a month).  If I find a 20 pound bag for $10 or less I'll grab around 60 pounds of the stuff, flour takes around a year to go bad if stored properly.


- 4 cups of flour

- teaspoon of salt

mix together.

-proof 2 teaspoons of yeast in one cup of warm water.

-add to flour/salt mix, mix in well add another 3 cups.

- fold the dough/beat the shit out of it.

- put dough ball in another bowl greased up with olive oil/butter/axel grease..whatever

- let rise for 90 minutes, take out of bowl, beat up some more, cut in half and pinch the bottoms on the loaves.

- into oven at 375 for around 20-25 minutes.

- French loaf for supper...


Alternatively pitas, or a formal loaf if you put it in a bread pan.  The salt is only in the mix to kill the yeast as the bread cooks btw, so the sodium can be lowered, it just makes the bread look weird if there isn't any.  Substitute any type of flour to avoid allergies. 

With all ingredients in, it works out to around 65 cents a loaf of bread.  I double the recipe and make bread for the week usually in bread pans.  The dough can be frozen after it rises and to reactivate the yeast you throw it right into the oven and add another ten minutes to cooking.


As you can see, four ingredients, no preservatives, low salt, cheap and takes a couple of minutes to acutally make.  Only thing cheaper out there to make is potatoe bread, but it's annoying to make.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 09:59 | 674851 romanko
romanko's picture

or you could use a breadmaking machine

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 13:17 | 675411 hardcleareye
hardcleareye's picture

Make sure your warm water isn't over 110 deg.

Add a  little sugar to the above is nice.

Talkin bread recipes on ZH wtf!!!!  (I got a batch rising right now, warm french bread for dinner with homemade split pea soup)lol

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 14:43 | 675762 DaveyJones
Mon, 10/25/2010 - 17:08 | 676140 Waterfallsparkles
Waterfallsparkles's picture

I make a lot of homemade soups.  So inexpensive.  Dried beans for bean soup with a ham bone or split pea soup with onions.  Also love a turkey carcus for turkey with dumplings.  Yum.  You can make enough for 2 weeks. I knew a girl that many though was poor and when we went to her house the snack was taking a ladel out of the pot of soup in the fridge and heating it up.

That is the reality for many people today.  But, I do love homemade soup.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 07:46 | 674631 mcc777c2
mcc777c2's picture

Every time I see a sign that states "Every Day Low Price" I know that the price has just gone up.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 08:02 | 674655 callistenes
callistenes's picture

Except its more than a little illegal to melt down the pennies.


Mon, 10/25/2010 - 08:12 | 674666 Winisk
Winisk's picture

I wanted to buy fish yesterday.  About ten bucks for a half dozen tiny fillets of haddock.  You can pay a premium if they add the seasoning and a colourful box.  Shelves were full of clever packaging of generic 'fish sticks'.  They don't have the honesty to tell you what kind it is in bold, pollock mostly.  I've been told the Newfies didn't even eat those back in the day.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 08:22 | 674670 CPL
CPL's picture

Pollock, bottom feeding shit eaters.  Disgusting fish.  I would first eat a catfish by a sewer vent.  As luck would have it there's a nice little river running through my properly.  Freezer has bluegill, couple of trout and bass to last me for a while. (goddamn I love bass)


I'll have to check out the grocery store for fish prices next time, only thing I ever look at are shrimp rings for BBQ's in the summertime.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 08:29 | 674685 tom
tom's picture

Hey, let's face it, anybody willing to pay anything at all that for that sludge is going to be taken advantage of fully. As the equivalent of Tepper among  multinational CEOs might say, sometimes it really is that easy.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 08:36 | 674690 Waterfallsparkles
Waterfallsparkles's picture

I noticed Canned Tuna.  I like the Albacore.  Used to be 10 oz. for .99 on sale.  Then 8 oz. for .99 on sale.  Now 6 oz. for .99 on sale.  It also appears to me that there is more water in the tuna than before.

The other thing that I think has gotten a lot more expensive is fresh vegetables.  Used to be able to get Fresh Broccoli for .99 per pound on sale, now $1.59.  Fresh Fruits Apples, peaches used to be .99 on sale, now (just bought some) $1.39.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 10:09 | 674875 MilleniumJane
MilleniumJane's picture

It also appears to me that there is more water in the tuna than before.

I noticed this happening to store brand varieties a few years ago.  Then the same thing sort of melted up to the brand names.  It got to the point that I couldn't even drain the tuna properly anymore because the flakes inside were so small and there was so much added water that it just seeped out around the edges like a tuna sludge.  I used to love a good tuna fish sandwich every now and used to be one of the most economical and healthy foods if one was on a budget.  I am so disgusted with the quality anymore that I haven't bought it for nine months now.

The other thing that I think has gotten a lot more expensive is fresh vegetables.

I agree with you there.  I live in WA and the price of apples is absolutely astounding, averaging $1.99 a pound with some novelty varieties commanding as much as $2.49 a pound.  The quality seems to be going down as well.  I could remember as a kid going out to the farmers' orchards and picking a case of fresh apples for about $0.49 a lb.  We would shove that case in the crawl space and it would last us through the winter.  As for the quality available in the grocery stores, I don't know if farmers/the middle men are saving the best apples for export to Asia or what.


Mon, 10/25/2010 - 09:11 | 674746 -Michelle-
-Michelle-'s picture

This topic is near and dear to my heart.  I used to be one of those people who could walk out of the grocery store with a couple hundred dollars worth of food for about $30 or so after combining sales and coupons.  It's near impossible to do that today.

As a shopper, I went from: obliviously purchasing whatever looked nice ---> making a grocery list for the week ----> making a grocery list and seeing if I had some coupons ----> making my grocery list based on what was on sale that week and seeing if I had some coupons ----> scouring deal sites for coupon matchups and basing the majority of my list on that ----> getting a BJ's club membership (because they accept coupons) and buying in bulk.

All in an effort to keep our grocery bill stable.  This was a three year progression.  Trust me, food inflation has been chugging along for some time.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 09:33 | 674795 gilligan
gilligan's picture

The 'amazing shrinking products' epidemic is also alive and well in Australia. Seems like every time I go to the supermarket it's something else. Cereal boxes are getting smaller; can only buy pissy little bottles of Kraft salad dressing now; and the one that really gets to me: chocolate. Chocolate bars like Mars and Snickers are down in size by over 10%, but price is higher. Almost fun-size now. Cadbury blocks down in size 20%, same old price.


They seem to think we are to busy admiring our real-estate portfolios here to notice.


Based on my regular supermarket runs, food inflation is running well ahead of the reported inflation rate we hear about too.

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 10:04 | 674866 chistletoe
chistletoe's picture

no doubt, the herders are looking at the prices of

corn and soy going forward,

and they are making the decision to slaughter and sell now

rather than trying to feed them through another cold winter.

I can now get sirloin for less per pound than potatoe chips or kleenex.

Of course, I don't own a freezer either, since the electric grid is pretty suspect.

But I do have a pressure canner and I know how to use it ....

Mon, 10/25/2010 - 11:01 | 674989 DosZap
DosZap's picture

This has been going on for TWO years.

CPI, (by design) never includes FOOD nor FUEL in their data.

The two most important indicators of INFLATION.

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!