Inflation hits NYC’s bodega favorite: Bacon, egg and cheese

Category: Business


Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

  1. climb / klaɪm / (v.) – to increase in value or amount

    The temperature climbs every summer season.

  2. goods / ɡʊdz / (n.) – things that are made to be sold

    The goods our country exports include electronic products and mangoes.

  3. slack / slæk / (n.) – a period of rest or decreased activity

    There’s just no slack because we need to finish the project within 24 hours.

  4. cope / koʊp / (v.) – to adjust against difficulties successfully

    We need to use renewable energy to cope with climate change.

  5. silver lining / ˈsɪl vər ˈlaɪ nɪŋ / (idiom) – something that’s good from a bad or unpleasant situation

    The silver lining in my delayed flight is I got to spend a bit more time with my family.


Read the text below.

Ah, the bacon, egg and cheese. The classic bodega breakfast sandwich is a staple in many a New Yorker’s diet. It’s easy to make, easy to eat on the go and cheap — although not as cheap as it used to be.

To keep up with today’s levels of inflation due to the pandemic and Russia’s war with Ukraine, bodega owners are faced with no choice but to raise the prices of their famously low-priced breakfast sandwiches.

“Bacon, egg and cheese — you can’t take that sandwich away,” said Francisco Marte, who owns a bodega in the Bronx. “That’s the favorite sandwich for the New Yorkers.”

Marte has had to increase prices on everything from sugar to potato chips — and the cost of his bacon, egg and cheese sandwich is up from $2.50 to $4.50.

At the wholesale level, inflation climbed 11.3% in June compared with a year earlier, the U.S. Department of Labor reported. Producer prices have surged nearly 18% for goods and nearly 8% for services compared with June 2021.

“These things happen. And normally, in normal times, the supply chain is able to absorb some of that shock,” said Katie Denis, a spokesperson with the Consumer Brands Association, a trade group representing food, personal care and cleaning companies. “Right now, there’s just no slack.”

Frances Rice, who stopped by Marte’s bodega for a bacon, egg and cheese, says she’s trying to work out how to cope with less slack in her budget as prices rise. She says there’s always a silver lining.

“It means that I buy a good breakfast and stretch it to lunch and don’t eat again until I get home, which means I lose weight,” she said. “Got to look at the brighter side of things, because you know what? Either way, if you got to move, you’ve got to pay. If you’re hungry, you have to eat.”

This article was provided by The Associated Press.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.

Discussion A

  • The bacon, egg, and cheese sandwich is a staple in New Yorkers’ diet. What is a staple food in your country? If it becomes too expensive, what alternatives do you think can replace this staple food? Discuss.
  • Aside from food, what other products and services are currently affected by inflation in your country? How are you adjusting to the price increase? Discuss.

Discussion B

  • Do you think price increases can affect the reputation of a store? In your opinion, how will price increases affect the satisfaction of customers? Discuss.
  • Do you think there is a silver lining to this inflation? Why or why not? Discuss.