Alabama shoppers got an early Christmas present in December as the average cost of 20 basic market basket items fell for the second month in a row. Although the cost of some holiday staples was up substantially over this time last year, the Alabama Farmers Federation’s monthly food price survey showed the December market basket averaged $57.63, down 57 cents or about 1 percent from last month.
Savings on meat and poultry led the decline in grocery costs. Bacon was down 36 cents a pound to $5.23, Boston butts were down 8 cents to $2 a pound, and pork chops were down 6 cents to $3.53. Beef eaters enjoyed a 29-cent-per-pound break on T-bone steaks, which averaged $7.61 a pound. Ground beef was up 9 cents to $2.89 a pound, and chuck roasts were up 4 cents to $3.90 a pound.
Chicken breasts were the best buy in the poultry case, with prices falling 22 cents to $1.92 a pound. Whole fryers were down 8 cents to $1.19 a pound.