There is a range of reasons behind the rise in food prices.
Demand for food is up, driven heavily by the expansion of incomes in Asia, mainly India and China.
Supply has not fallen, but millions of acres that could have produced more grain have been shifted to corn for ethanol. ...
Over the past two years, the list price for Red Brick six packs has gone from $6.49 to $8.99, [the president of ABC] said. "That still does not cover all of our added food costs. It means that our profit margin is not as big as it was."
Barley is up 82 percent since last year, aluminum for kegs is up more than 20 percent and bottles cost 18 percent more, said David Guender, director of sales at SweetWater Brewing Co., another Atlanta brewery.
Overall costs are up 17 percent to 20 percent just in the past eight months, [guy from Sweetwater] said. SweetWater's prices are up about 7 percent in that period.
* 2002: $2.72 per bushel
* 2007: $4.10 per bushel
* 2008, projected price: $4.58 per bushel
* 2002: $1.91 per pound
* 2007: $2.81 per pound
* 2008, preliminary price: $6.36 per pound
Unmentioned in this article is that the corn/ethanol craze has mainly affected barley production. Hop vineyards have just about remained the same, the factor contributing to the price fluctuation this last year is just the main warehouse that supplies almost all the hops in the US burned to the ground a few months ago and prices skyrocketed overnight. Rare/odd hops are almost impossible to find now. The hop supplies should be back in a comfortable state in a few years, but the squeeze on barley is only going to get worse as people chose corn to make ethanol and as food prices for basic cereals go up throughout the world.
Even beer prices are rising - AJC.com