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Inflation goes up in the U.S., affecting small Tucson businesses

Made in Tucson Market
Posted at 10:35 PM, Apr 07, 2024

TUCSON, Ariz. (KGUN) — As she greeted her customers, owner of Mama Luna OrganicsLauren Rosenthal introduced them to her teas, balms, and oils.

A lot of the ingredients she uses in all of her products have gone up in price in recent months. She said simple things like the bottles she puts her products in have gone up 25 cents a bottle.

“Lately it’s kind of off the charts, it feels like,” she said. “It’s sort of affected all of our products. Our supplies cost more, our ingredients, our containers, shipping.”

She said she hasn’t had to raise her prices on customers, and it’s markets like the Made in Tucson Market that have allowed her to reach more customers, even online.

“So we have people that have been long time customers that come out to the markets and we meet a ton of new community members,” she said.

“The federal reserve says inflation went up 2.4 percent for a 12 month period that ended in January. They say inflation then went up a little more to 2.5 percent for a 12 month period that ended in February.

The Federal Reserve is hoping the U.S. can reach their goal of 2 percent inflation soon but its chair said they expected the recent data.

It’s hitting people like Julianna Asis, who just started Larrea Handcrafted Skincare in February. She said she is already seeing prices for main ingredients like olive oil and the shipping for those ingredients go up about 60 percent.

“I used to buy a unit for about 30 dollars and I now buy those units for about 55,” Asis said.

She said it’s a balance between having to pay more but also not raising prices on customers.

“I want to make it approachable prices on my products, but I also need to make sure that I’m earning money,” she said.

Asis is glad markets like the Made in Tucson Market are allowing her business to grow.

“It’s been going really well. It’s a great community,” she said

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Andrew Christiansen is a reporter for KGUN 9. Before joining the team, Andrew reported in Corpus Christi, Texas for KRIS6 News, Action 10 News and guest reported in Spanish for Telemundo Corpus Christi. Share your story ideas with Andrew by emailing andrew.christiansen@kgun9.com or by connecting on Facebook, or Twitter.