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Opening Arguments

Food bites

Since I'm in the grocery store two or three times a month, this isn't exactly a shock for me to read:


World food prices are likely to rise for a third successive month in March, and could gain further beyond that, with expensive oil and chronically low stocks of some key grains putting food inflation firmly back on the economic agenda.

Food prices grabbed world policy makers' attention after hitting record highs in February 2011 and stoking protests connected to the Arab Spring wave of civil unrest in some north Africa and middle eastern countries.

The funny thing is that I've never reeally paid that much attention to individual prices -- I couldn't tell you the price of a 12-ounce ribeye or a loaf of bread if my life depended on it. But since I buy roughly the same stuff every trip (creature of habit, you know), inflation has been very apparent in the jump of my total bill. My grocery bill hovered around $100 just a couple of years ago. Now, I'm lucky to get out of the place without spending $140.

Inflation hasn't been much in the news in the past couple of years, but if you just consider food and gas, it's a big deal.