Beef Prices Forecast to Rise [AUDIO]
Continuing a multi-year trend, consumers are facing higher beef prices in 2014. Still, beef is expected to remain "king of the protein" among shoppers.
From hamburger meat to filet mignon, beef prices are forecast to rise by 4 percent next year, according to Kevin Good with CattleFax.
"Beef production has been flat-to-declining over the last decade. At the same time, we've continued to export a little more," Good explained.
Spikes in the price of corn had forced producers to cut back on their livestock operations, leading to lesser supply and a desperate need to increase "sticker shock" at the supermarket.
Despite the price jumps, Good said higher-end beef items like steak still have a strong customer base. Those looking for a good deal, though, have been known to bypass the hamburgers and switch to chicken or pork for dinner.
Consumers may see an end to price jumps in the near future. Livestock operators have been attempting to ramp up their herds, and as long as Mother Nature cooperates, prices can level out in two to three years.
"We are starting to get better moisture," Good said. "We're starting to see the herds turn around."