NewsI-TeamTMJ4 Price Tracker


Supply chain issues continue to impact price, inventory at local grocery stores

low inventory at grocery stores
Posted at 4:41 PM, Apr 08, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-08 19:33:16-04

MILWAUKEE — The TMJ4 Price Tracker was launched back in February to keep tabs on price fluctuations of staple food items at local grocery stores. In recent weeks, TMJ4 has noticed some grocery stores are also experiencing a low inventory of some items like milk, eggs, cheese products and, at some stores, potatoes.

"If demand is high and supply is low or decreasing, prices are going to go up, it's that simple," said Wisconsin Grocers Association President Brandon Scholz.

He says if you notice prices going up or empty shelves, it could mean there's an issue somewhere down the supply chain. For example, right now bird flu is having a direct impact on the supply of chicken and eggs.

"Anytime there's something out of the norm in the supply chain, that's going to cause a ripple effect," Scholz said.

Milwaukee resident Markeeta Mitchel noticed an increase in prices after picking up groceries for her family on Friday.

"In the meat category, meat is just skyrocketing. Chicken is like $20 for a family pack," Mitchel said. "If you want to find something you have to go to another store and probably two more stores."

According to Scholz, shoppers are more likely to see fluctuations in supply and price of perishable products.

"In produce, in the meat department, in the dairy cooler, in our delis and bakeries. Those are the most challenging," Scholz said.

Scholz cautions that when you hear of prices going up at the grocery store, it doesn't mean every item will be impacted. And if the price is high or you can't find something at the store, that will likely change.

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Tracking grocery prices

Starting on Feb. 25, 2022, the TMJ4 I-Team is visiting several Milwaukee-area stores to track the change in prices of a select basket of goods. You can see our shopping list below. On the left, you can see several graphics tracking the changing prices at each store. Some items are subject to sales on a week by week basis.