By CORIE RINCON and ANDREW TERRY
Student Reporter and Co-Editor
The cost of food in America has been steadily increasing over the past few years. The USDA’s most recent consumer price index for food reports that overall food prices have risen 8.7% on average since 2021.
The rising cost of food alongside inflation in housing and gas prices have affected some AC students.
“I recently moved out of my parents’ house, so the little that I make goes to my rent and bills,” Ana Hernandez, an education major, said. “I work two jobs so I can keep up with my bills and groceries and it stresses me out because sometimes even with two jobs, I still don’t have enough money.”
The rise in prices is related to a few different factors according to a report by Forbes adviser. As with most things, the effects of pandemic-related supply chain disruptions are still being felt by consumers. Additionally, Russia and Ukraine account for 30% of the world’s wheat exports, so with sanctions on Russia and a 92% decline in Ukrainian cargo exports from May 2021 to May 2022, the world is seeing a large shortage of wheat and wheat products.
Increased prices have caused low-income households to skip out on foods like chocolate, carbonated beverages and frozen seafood according to a report by Iri, a market research company. Frozen dinners, cookies and coffee have seen a downturn in purchasing in stores across the country.
The AC food pantry has seen an increase in student use in 2022 according to Jordan Herrera, the director of social services at AC.
“We have food pantries available at all of the Amarillo College campuses,” Herrera said. “The food pantry at the Washington Street Campus is available through our online ordering form,” which is located on the Advocacy and Resource Center’s webpage on the AC website. Students can use the food pantry up to twice a month.
AC also hosts the High Plains Food Bank Mobile Harvest produce truck on Tuesdays near the STEM research building from 11:30 a.m. until 12:30 p.m. or when they run out of produce. The food pantry also offers baby products and menstrual hygiene products for students.