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Food prices rose the most in 36 years last month (from the previous month), with wholesale prices (the Producer Price Index, or PPI, which includes other things besides food prices)up the most in over 2 years. According to the article, most of this was due to a nearly 50% increase in the price of vegetables, although prices of other foods have gone up as well.

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Besides other factors (such as heavy rains which damaged some crops), the rise of oil prices due to unrest in the Middle East (and some speculation I’m sure) and the tragedy that is still unfolding in Japan has the potential to drive food prices even higher, at least in the short term.

Here are some tips on fighting the rising cost of food

Cut Back pn expensive items -Even though prices on just about everything are going up, if you focus on things that are more expensive and substitute cheaper alternatives, you will have more money left over for other items in your food budget.

Eat Out Less -Cooking at home definitely saves you money, and if you are trying to cut down your overall food bill, cutting back on eating out is a great place to trim costs, as restaurant prices will be going up as well.

Grow your own vegetables-Growing your own vegetables or herbs can help trim your grocery bill as well. In many parts of the country, now is the time to start planting.

What’s your budget  trick?

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