STUART, Fla. — Inflation has hit a 40-year-high, and one of the main places consumers are feeling it is at the grocery store.
You can see the rising prices in almost every store you walk into. One woman on Tuesday told WPTV she spent about $50 more this year preparing for Easter dinner..
The rising prices have some people buying less and changing their shopping habits.
In the parking lot outside Winn-Dixie in Stuart, Denise Jagoda loaded her trunk after spending more for groceries than this time last year.
"I tell ya, I'm probably spending about 15% more," Jagoda said.
So now Jagoda is trying a new strategy to avoid wasting money.
"I just try to do BOGOs, Buy One Get One Free, and most of my shopping will only be BOGOs and I plan my menu around whatever is on sale," Jagoda said.
On Tuesday, new data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics showed inflation climbed to 8.5% in March, putting a squeeze on people's wallets. The 12-month jump is the sharpest year-over-year increase since December 1981.
"At that time I was married and my husband was working. It was a difficult situation. I didn't have to live on a fixed income, but it was still difficult but to me this is worse," said Barbara Bragagnini.
Bragagnini lives alone and said she's now spending at least $15 to $20 dollars more each week, which cuts into her social security.
"I do look for the ads in the paper and try and take advantage of coupons I see," Bragagnini said.
Grocery prices overall have jumped up some 10%. According to the Labor Department, Florida is on par with the national average.
Supply chain issues and disruptions to the global food market have been made worse by Russia's war with Ukraine.
Now shoppers are searching for sales, and in Bragagnini's case, sometimes doing without.
"I do buy a little less and if I know something is going to be on sale, then I can just wait," Bragagnini said.
We're told the Federal Reserve will likely continue to raise interest rates to fight inflation.
Experts tell WPTV they believe inflation will soon hit its peak, but that doesn't mean relief will happen right away.