Soda's Inflation Rates Will Give You Sticker Shock

While good fortune may be coming to us Americans as inflation rates in the country level off, prices are still high and people's wallets are still emptying way faster than usual. There are many ways the astronomic inflation rate has affected consumers' spending habits over the last year.

For one, more and more people are sticking to just the essentials when it comes to grocery shopping. Walmart admitted to seeing shoppers buy cheaper options for name-brand products with fewer items purchased overall (via CNN). While tacking on impulse buys at the end of your weekly grocery shopping isn't as common in 2022, do drinks other than water have a permanent place on your essentials list?

Many people might consider their morning brew necessary despite the cost of coffee beans rising an astonishing 38.8% over the last three years. Its also true that most consumers will splurge when it comes to their weekend beer: Even if their go-to selection is now too expensive, people will willingly "[trade] down for cheaper beer brands" (via The Wall Street Journal). With the prices rising for your beloved coffee and spirits, soft drinks are also taking a hit amidst the record-high inflation of 2022.

The rising cost of soft drinks

Despite the various kinds of soda available on the market, prices are at an all-time high due to the climbing inflation rate. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the cost of one 12-ounce can per 12 pack has risen substantially since 2019. Panic buying related to the COVID-19 pandemic contributed to surging prices, and from February 2019 to January 2021 the cost of soda rose 16%.

What's even more shocking are the numbers when compared across the three-year timeline. When you look at the increase from February 2019 when the average cost was approximately $0.35 for every 12 oz can to June 2022 when the average cost was $0.49, the cost of soda increased an alarming 38%.

While food and fuel have become costlier with inflation, so have metals. The cost of aluminum alone has climbed roughly 60% over the course of a year, reported Reuters in early 2021. Not only have Coca-Cola and PepsiCo warned consumers of increased prices based on supply chain issues and the high cost of aluminum, but Monster has also stated they it will be hiking its energy drink prices by around 6% as of September 1 of this year (via Food Navigator-USA). Drinking from a can in 2022 has definitely become a luxury for most Americans' as inflation stands stagnant yet prices continue to remain high.