Consumers nationwide felt tricked by the price of Halloween treats again this year.
According to reports, this was the second consecutive year for which candy prices in October were more than 10% higher than the same point in the previous year. Shoppers paid on average about 13% more than they did for the same products in 2022, which in turn were nearly 14% more expensive than they were in 2021.
Inflation for the sugary stuff was roughly twice as high as the average price increase for groceries in general, according to the Grocery Price Index published by Datasembly.
Families are feeling Bidenflation this Halloween.
Halloween candy prices are up 13% this year.https://t.co/Qf0BDxsKc6
— Marsha Blackburn (@VoteMarsha) October 30, 2023
The added cost has resulted in trends that could cause some trick-or-treaters to return home with a less-than-stellar Halloween haul this week.
In a recent interview, a small business owner in Illinois explained that she would be scaling back on the amount of candy she bought for neighborhood kids and holiday parties.
“The price of candy has gotten to be outrageous,” Jessica Weathers explained. “It doesn’t make sense to me to spend $100 on candy.”
Others have opted to downgrade the quality of candy from premium brands to more affordable treats. One estimate indicated that about one-third of all Americans who bought candy this year chose cheaper options than they would have normally purchased.
While the Biden administration’s economic policies have fueled inflation across the board in recent years, there are some specific issues that experts say have contributed to the higher-than-usual rate of price increases for candy.
The combined results of both droughts and flooding across West African regions where most of the cocoa supply originates have resulted in inflation-adjusted prices that are higher than at any point in more than four decades.
Furthermore, India’s ban on sugar export and a reduced supply in Thailand has contributed to the rising costs.
Other ingredients — notably peanuts — as well as the cost of labor, packaging and shipping have also been continuously trending upward.
After having raised its prices by at least 7% in each of the seven most recent quarters, Hershey CEO and President Michele Buck claimed to sympathize with cash-strapped consumers during a recent call with investors.
“We know that value and affordability continue to be top of the line for consumers as budgets are stretched,” she said.