The Real Story Behind Increasingly Expensive Groceries

Acabonac Farms |

Like many of you I've noticed the steadily increasing price of food when grocery shopping. You may be surprised to learn that meat constitutes half of the price increases we are experiencing at the register. Even more alarming is that just four large conglomerates control the vast majority of the consumer market for beef, pork and chicken. These firms are: Cargill - a global commodity trader based in Minnesota, Tyson Foods, the Brazilian company JBS SA - the world's biggest meatpacker; and National Beef Packing Co - controlled by Brazilian beef producer Marfrig Global Foods SA.

In fact, today the largest four beef packing firms control 82% of the entire consumer beef market. This meat cartel has been so effective at consolidating power that our government is currently pursuing legal action against these companies for price fixing and collusion. Far beyond the free market ideas of supply and demand, these mega corporations are enjoying record breaking profits, bordering on pandemic profiteering while the American public continues to struggle affording basic food items. 

This is exactly why we say shopping local is important. Rather than a mystery conglomerate accountable only to shareholders, local farms like Acabonac Farms is accountable to you, our community and neighbors. If we're able to moderate our prices without gouging customers I believe billion dollar companies are more than equipped enough to do the same.

With that being said, we do make the most of our small size  and use it to our advantage - working hard and smart to keep prices low. We use local vendors and services when available so we spend less on shipping and transportation to produce our grass finished beef. We also service a smaller area than national brands. This means we can focus on delivering the best beef at the best price to a smaller area rather than building out expensive infrastructure to ship frozen beef far from home. 

We're also a small family farm. In terms of labor we run a tight ship and don't have the overhead larger companies incur as a function of their size. Labor is one of the biggest expenses for any company, and by keeping our team small we can stay nimble and keep pricing steady.

Last, but certainly not least, we build value into our sales models. We expend roughly the same amount of time and sending you 1 pound or 10 pounds of beef. So we pass that savings on to you in the form of bulk discounts. We also lock in prices of all our subscription products. If you signed up for a ground beef subscription 2 years ago, you're still paying those 2020 prices! 

I'm not sure when the prices at the grocery store will come down, if ever. We can only hope that the direct legal action against the four companies controlling the meat supply will prove effective. But what I am sure of is our ability at Acabonac Farms to remain nimble and serve our community the best way we know how: producing nutrient dense, delicious grass finished beef while passing on the savings to you whenever we can.


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