Drought costing businesses and consumers - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Drought costing businesses and consumers

CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) -

Consumers are told to expect higher prices at the grocery store and at restaurants because of the drought.

The problem is two-fold: shipping more with lighter loads on rivers and high corn costs.

At SEMO Milling, they grind corn into other products so companies can use it for finished food products.

They use six to seven million bushels of locally grown corn to make their products.

With the extreme drought, less corn is available- so prices go up.

Water levels are also low, so barges can't carry full loads and have to make more trips.

"We're already paying higher prices," said Dan Fetherston with SEMO Milling. "We are going to have to expand the area in which we gather corn which will mean higher costs to us. Ultimately those type of costs end up being passed on in the ingredients and ultimately the consumer."

The government expects overall food prices to rise 3 to 4 percent next year. That's more than inflation.

Copyright 2012 KFVS. All rights reserved.

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