Egg Prices Increased by 60% in 2022

Egg prices rose 60% in 2022. One farm group claims it’s a “collusive scheme” by suppliers.

In 2022, egg prices skyrocketed to alarming levels. Among all types of eggs, consumers witnessed average prices surge 60% in 2022 per consumer price index data. For example, the average set of Grade A eggs cost $4.25 a dozen in December, which represented a 138% increase from $1.79 in 2021.

The general narrative that the egg industry has used to explain this price hike is that a historic outbreak of the avian influenza — that has resulted in the deaths of millions of hens — is the key driver behind the rising prices

However, Farm Action, an agricultural watchdog organization, believes the “real culprit” behind the rising prices is a “collusive scheme” that prominent egg producers have engaged in with the aim of allegedly fixing and gouging prices. The organization made this claim in a letter addressed to the Federal Trade Commission.

Per the letter, this collusive behavior has allowed producers to “extract egregious profits reaching as high as 40%.” In 2022, the US was rocked by the deadliest outbreak of bird flu in its history. 

The U.S. suffered its deadliest outbreak of bird flu in history in 2022. Roughly 58 million birds in 47 states have succumbed to the “highly pathogenic avian influenza”, per a report by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The previous record was broken in 2015, when the avian flu killed 50.5 million birds.  Roughly 42.5 million egg-laying hens (about 13%) have died since the 2022 avian flu pandemic, according to analysis conducted by Urner Barry, a market research firm focused on the wholesale food industry. Indeed, egg prices are on the rise. There can be multiple factors at play here. The obvious one being the avian flu outbreak of 2022. However, there can be other factors such as the US’s loose monetary policy, which drives inflation, and burdensome regulatory policies that keep egg prices artificially high. 

Overall, if the US wants to see its middle and lower classes enjoy higher standards of living, it must downsize its regulatory state and contain inflation as much as possible.

Our Latest Articles