The price of conventional food in the US has been rising “much faster” than that of organic during the last two years, according to a new survey by personal finance specialists MagnifyMoney.
The survey used ‘snapshots’ of pricing for 29 organic and conventional food items – including fruit and vegetables, dairy products and selected meat cuts, but excluding specialist foods – taken during the week ending 7 September 2021, and the same week in 2019.
The survey found that, overall, prices for select conventional foods have risen by an average of 13.9% — 12 percentage points more than the 1.6% growth in costs for organic varieties.
In the survey, broccoli features the biggest difference in percentage points — 117 — between organic and conventional pricing changes. Organic broccoli increased from $2.10 a pound in 2019 to $2.61 in 2021, a 24.3% jump, while conventional broccoli went from $0.63 to $1.52, a 141.3% increase.
However, despite the higher price rises for conventional food, the price of organic for most foods categories remains significantly higher than for conventional. On average, organic items cost 70.7% more than their conventional counterparts, MagnifyMoney found. While the price difference for fruit and vegetables is typically less than a dollar per pound/package, it was much more marked for meat products. For example, regardless of cut — thighs, breasts, drumsticks or whole — conventional chicken costs an average of 188.5% more than organic.