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A sort of iconic local steak place (it wasn’t fancy, but a neat place with a neat ambience) has recently shut down (see here).  Now, places close for all sorts of reasons. But reports indicate that one reason for the closing is that beef prices have marched too high, and customers simply will not pay that much for beef.

Of course beef prices rise for lots of reasons, including demand around the world as poor nations become rich (a good thing). But remember that ethanol policy has sharply driven up the price not only of corn, but most feedstock, which is responsible for a portion of the rise in beef prices.

So, if it is fair to paint most “E”nvironmentalists as locavores, then a favored locavore policy, biofuels, is responsible for killing a local business (yes it has roots in KC, but is is definitely NOT McDonalds). I’d laugh if it were not for the fact that people’s livelihoods get destroyed by this. Where will those former steak-lovers go? Farther away? A chain? Who knows. And to the locavores, I suppose, who cares?

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2 Responses to “The Death of a Local Business”

  1. Harry says:

    No doubt ethanol mandates have had a bad effect on everyone who feeds animals for a living, including cattlemen/cattlewomen and steakhouse impresarios.

    A good project for one of your students would be to do an inflation adjusted graph of beef prices, say steers, FOB KC. My guess it would be flat or declining.

  2. RIT_Rich says:

    Don’t forget the drought through much of beef country this year, no doubt caused by Global Warming :p

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