"We probably won't see huge dramatic increases on food prices. We'll see incremental increases," he said.
Darrel Good, an agricultural economist with the University of Illinois, said the public can expect to pay more for food in 2011.
"Food prices will exceed the normal annual inflation of 1 to 2 percent. We might be looking at an increase of 4, 5 or 6 percent this year," he said.
John Waugh, president of Waugh Foods, an East Peoria-based food distributor, is worried that history may repeat itself this year. "I'm afraid we could be looking at a repeat of 2008, when prices shot up on everything," he said.
"With fuel prices up, we're looking at controlling every expense we can. You can't just raise all your prices (to customers)," said Waugh, whose firm's 15 trucks serve a territory within a 120-mile radius of Peoria.
"Flour, wheat are all way up. Coffee (prices) have gone through the roof," he said.
"We paid over $2 a pound for ground beef last week. We were paying $1.39 a pound last summer," said Waugh.
Read more at the Peoria-Journal Star Web site: http://www.pjstar.com/business/x1390758204/Food-prices-could-rise-throughout-the-next-year