By Laura Keil, Publisher/Editor

The cost of many food items will be going up again this fall, which experts are blaming on both the pandemic and climate change-related droughts on the prairies.

Over the last eight months, the cost of food has increased by an average of five per cent, but some items—like beef, pork and grains—have gone up more.

Another variation of price increases is the decrease in the size of the product with no decrease in price.

Seeing food go up in price is scary. Since most of us don’t grow enough of our own food to live on, we are essentially forced to pay higher prices, which can cut our budgets for other things in life.

Our small communities also have the added pressure of transportation costs to factor into prices. Anything heavy, like liquid or food packed in liquid, racks up fuel charges.

While the cost of produce and chicken have remained steady thus far, having so many increases could seriously impact local wallets.

If you can afford to, please consider donating to a local organization that helps supplement the grocery bill of people who can’t afford to fill their cart. The Valemount and McBride Food Banks are good ones. In Valemount there is also Meals on Wheels. Or if you know someone who could use a boost, consider buying them a gift card.

When market forces threaten to squeeze local residents, our community rise up to meet them.