CA drought could raise national food prices - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

CA drought could raise national food prices

CARTERVILLE, IL (KFVS) - California's ongoing drought has some experts warning about possible food prices rising down the line. The reason lies in the thousands of gallons of water that sit in the average American grocery cart as it rolls out of the store.

One egg at breakfast uses 120 gallons of water on its journey to the frying pan, and a single cup of coffee one may use to wash it down requires 37 from start to finish of production.

Carterville's IGA grocery store manager Tim Olsen says if west coast production slows down, the effects will ripple through every household.

"Tighter supply, more demand, and there go your prices.” Olsen explained, “It's something you don't normally think about, but when you stop and measure it out and everything, it's really impressive."

A single tomato requires 3.3 gallons of water to produce, while the average sized head of broccoli uses up to 5.5.

Carterville resident Natasha Davis was browsing through the IGA on Friday, looking to put food on the table for her five children. “a family our size goes through a lot of food.” Davis said, “so that would really impact us severely."

"We have to have food.” said shopper Marcus Milton, “We can't just say, ‘well, I'm not gonna do this. I'm not going to pay for this,' we have to have that for survival obviously."

Three pounds of ground beef averages a total of 5,400 gallons of water in production.

"One pound of beef is not going to go very far for us, so that takes a lot of water for us to have five pounds of meat." Olsen said, "It's hard sometimes to realize that what's going on outside your small community that what's going on there is going to impact your life here."

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