The dramatic surge in egg prices across the nation spawned a series of suspects. Everything from Joe Biden’s inflation to production drops and an avian flu outbreak was blamed for sticker shock in the dairy section, but new data points towards a different culprit.
Namely, large egg producers.
According to a CNN report, the largest supplier of eggs in the U.S. reported staggering increases in both revenue and profits. Cal-Maine Foods more than doubled its revenue last quarter to almost a billion dollars, and its profits skyrocketed a staggering 718%.
Cal-Maine Foods, the largest egg producer in the United States, reported revenue doubled and profit surged 718% last quarter because of sharply higher egg prices.
— Brian Tyler Cohen (@briantylercohen) March 30, 2023
As for egg production, the company reported the total number of eggs sold rose by 1%. So, no shortage there.
Cal-Maine controls roughly 20% of the U.S. market, and it reported the average price of a dozen eggs in the quarter ending Feb. 25 was $3.30. That’s more than double the price of a year earlier of just $1.61.
As for net income, all American companies would choose to be so fortunate as Cal-Maine. Its net income exploded to $323.2 million from only $39.5 million a year ago, according to the CNN report.
Normally in the Biden economy, prices climb so fast that few would take note of a dozen eggs. However, this grocery store staple raced upward so quickly that consumers felt the pinch as they shopped for their families.
It was just January when the price of a dozen eggs flew by that of a pound of beef. That anomaly had not been recorded since the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics began tracking this data in 1980. A dozen large Grade A eggs ran a staggering $4.82 in January 2023.
Compare that to a pound of ground beef, which totaled $4.64.
Now flashback to January 2022. Those eggs cost $1.93 and that pound of ground beef was $4.77. However, that’s before eggs shot through the roof in less than 12 months.
And remember that avian flu scare, the one that many “experts” blamed soaring egg prices on? CNN reported that Cal-Maine said in its earnings statement that there were “no positive tests for avian flu at any of its owned or contracted production facilities.”
Egg prices fell back somewhat in the government’s latest inflation report for February, However, the staple item remains a full 55% higher than just a year ago.