The worst Midwest drought in at least 25 years has significantly raised the price of beef across the country, according to the NY Post.
The U.S. Agricultural Department claims that 80 percent of the region’s agricultural land has been affected by a severe drought, which is affecting the price of beef in several ways.
First, acres of corn and soybeans that in previous years would have turned into cattle feed simply never grew. That raised the overall price of feed, which in turn forced cattle ranchers to sell younger, scrawnier cattle, which bear less meat. The larger, fattier cuts are preferred by steakhouses, and these shortages are already affecting prices in some of the country’s most famed steakhouses.
At New York’s Peter Luger, for example, the cost of the New York Strip has increased by 11 percent, to $46.95, and most purveyors are estimating that the average price for beef will increase up to 20 percent in 2013.
But it’s not just the steakhouses that are affected; your average supermarket steak has increased in price too, thanks to the drought, along with pork, poultry, eggs, and dairy.