The price of eggs in the U.S. has increased an average of 47% from a year ago in July.

The price of eggs in the U.S. has increased an average of 47% from a year ago in July.

The price of eggs is soaring as yet another staple item is hit by inflation.

The cost of eggs increased 47% in July, leaving emotional customers staring at bare store shelves that normally hold the lower-cost brands. In California, where a new law pushed up prices because it outlawed sales that were not cage-free, the average cost per dozen is $4.52. This price is only outdone by Hawaii, which comes in at a whopping $7, according to the data mining site Expatistan.

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A display of eggs at Costco in Fountain Valley, California on Aug. 7, 2022

Low-cost retailers like Costco saw prices jump at least $1 over the past few weeks. An Orange County, California, Costco store had sold out all pallets of white eggs and only had pricier organic brown eggs to offer customers. A sign said, “Limit 2,” with a price tag of $8.49 for a two-dozen pack.

“Wow,” said one man who approached the display and walked away empty-handed. Another shopper picked up a package and shook her head, saying, “Unfortunately, I have to buy this. I need it.”

The Consumer Price Index was 8.5% in July. But grocery store prices climbed 13.1% over the past year, the largest increase since 1979. Food prices are up 14%, Bloomberg reported.

Egg price increases can be attributed to one of the nation’s worst bird flu outbreaks, which killed more than 30 million commercial and wild birds. Hens and turkeys were hit the worst, and growers are working on repopulating their flocks.

In the long run, low-cost poultry could be a thing of the past as two top chicken companies merged with a third to control 15% of the chicken market. This means the top four competitors have a 60% market share, further pushing out lower-level farms, Forbes reported.

by Tori Richards, Investigative Reporter