from toledoblade.com: Through March, the price of food is up 1.7 percent during the last year, according to the latest data from the U.S. Labor Department’s Bureau of Labor Statistics. That is running ahead of the general inflation rate, currently at 1.5 percent. In March alone, retail food prices rose 0.4 percent from February. And in February prices were up 0.4 percent from January, according to bureau data. Where consumers and retailers are getting gut-punched the hardest is in the animal-protein category, which includes meats such as beef, pork, and poultry, eggs, and seafood.