Your Memorial Day Cookout Will Probably Cost More This Year, Thanks To Inflation

Zinger Key Points
  • Barbecue expenses hit a 10% spike this Memorial Day, pinching pockets harder.
  • From pickles to soda, no cookout essential has been spared by inflation.

Americans will face a 10% increase in barbecue costs this Memorial Day weekend as inflation continues to impact the economy.

What Happened: The cost of Memorial Day cookout items has risen by 10% from last year. The average expense for a typical barbecue has climbed to $30, up from $27 in 2023, as reported by WalletHub.

A Consumer Affairs report echoed similar findings, noting that the cost of seven essential barbecue items, including burgers and hot dogs, totaled $30.18, compared to $27.39 last year.

The primary driver of this increase is the soaring price of burgers, which have risen by 15% to $8.07 for an order of eight.

Other items have also seen price hikes. Burger and hot dog buns are up 1%, while condiments such as ketchup and mustard have increased by 2% and 3%, respectively. Relish prices have surged by 49% due to a pickle shortage caused by extreme weather in Mexico.

Additionally, according to the Labor Department's Bureau of Labor Statistics, the cost of beer has risen by 3%, and soda prices are up 4.1%. The New York Post reported that food inflation was 3.4% higher year-over-year in April, with groceries being 2.2% more expensive than in 2023. 

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Why It Matters: The rising costs of Memorial Day barbecues reflect broader inflationary trends affecting the U.S. economy. According to the Labor Department, food inflation has been a persistent issue, with April seeing a 3.4% year-over-year increase.

This price surge is not limited to barbecues but extends to everyday grocery items, now 2.2% more expensive than last year.

Extreme weather conditions, such as those in Mexico affecting pickle supplies, have exacerbated these price hikes. The pickle shortage is a prime example of how climate events can disrupt supply chains and drive costs.

This and the overall inflationary environment mean consumers face higher prices.

Moreover, the increase in beverage costs, including a 3% rise in beer prices and a 4.1% hike in soda prices, highlights the widespread nature of inflation.

These price increases are part of a larger trend affecting various sectors, from groceries to dining out.

As these costs continue to rise, consumers may need to adjust their spending habits, especially for holiday celebrations like Memorial Day.

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This content was partially produced with the help of Benzinga Neuro and was reviewed and published by Benzinga editors.

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