If you've been feeling the pinch at the grocery store checkout, you're not alone. The prices of many staples have been on the rise and could be increasing even more.

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The U.S. Department of Agriculture said the prices of eggs, milk, beef, and fresh produce could be increasing as many California farms, major producers of those products, have suffered through a series of droughts.

Additionally, a surge of international demand from Asia is sending the price of beef skyrocketing. CNNmoney.com reports the price of a pound of ground beef has hit a record high at $3.55, up 56 percent since 2010. Round steak is at the highest price it's been in 20 years, at $5.28.

Many New Jersey shoppers are already experiencing the higher cost of daily items, forcing them to either dedicate more money to their food budgets or cut back on purchases.

"I used to spend $15 to buy food, now I spend about $40," one resident said.

However, for other residents, there's not much leeway.

"I really can't," said another. "I'm on a fixed income so I do without."

In an effort to pinch pennies, shoppers say they're on the constant hunt for sales, and they've learned to buy in bulk on costlier items like meat. Some have even modified their diets to be more wallet-friendly.

"No more steak," said one Old Bridge resident. "Lots of chicken, beans, and rice."


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