REMSEN, N.Y. (WUTR/WFXV/WPNY) – Consumers have been scrambling to find eggs, and when they are on the shelves the prices are nearly 60% higher than they were last year.
Farmer Ben Simons explains there’s multiple factors contributing to the issues across the egg industry.
“First of all, you have the Avian Flu that wiped out roughly five percent of the population of the flock of chickens in the United States so that created less eggs for everybody it’s a supply and demand deal,” said Ben Simons, Simons Family Farms.
Simons says inflation is a factor in the rising costs.
“Everything has doubled. The price of chickens, the price of grain, the price of fuel coming on to the farm and the price of fuel of leaving the farm,” said Simons.
The grocery stores also play a major role.
“By the time they pay their labor and the grocery store space and the cost of electricity, and everything it takes to run the grocery store it’s a multiplier so the consumer which is the end user is paying seven to $10 a dozen for a dozen eggs but if you go back to the original farmer that growed that egg he isn’t making any more money it’s just the expense to get the egg from the farmer to the consumer at the grocery store,” said Ben.
Amid the skyrocketing prices, the cheapest eggs can be found at your local farmer’s market. However, many shops are limiting customers to 1 dozen eggs per person.
“They’ve been taking eggs right off the shelf I can’t keep them on the shelves because the stores are so much higher than we are. Usually you’ll find that they are cheaper right from the farm. They are actually fresher from the farm. You know what you’re getting,” said Eric Horn, Horn’s Family Farm.
Looking to the future, it does not look like the price will be lowering anytime soon, and another wave of the avian flu could prolong this issue. So, what can farmers do to combat the impact?
“Come springtime a lot of the local chicken producers and egg producers talk about confining their chickens a little more than they normally would as the avian flu birds are going north to Canada, they’re talking confinement, and controlling what comes on to their farm by confining the birds they currently have,” said Ben.