If you've been to the grocery store recently, you probably have noticed that dairy and beef prices are way up. The latest Consumer Price Index report showed dairy prices posted the biggest gains in more than three years. Prices for milk, steaks, pork chops and other foods are rising because feed prices are shooting up and animal supplies are tight.
At the grocery store — standing in the chilly dairy aisle or looking over a case of meat — you may not be happy about the prices. But don't blame the farmer or rancher. Take a look at these photos by Jay Janner, staff photographer at the Austin-American Statesman. Scenes of drought and fire in rural Texas give a sense of why beef and veal prices rose 10.4 percent since August 2010.
Meat prices are expected to remain high well into next year, in large part because, with corn above $7 a bushel, livestock producers' feed costs are up dramatically.