Inflation in the Bay Area Worries Small Businesses, Customers

"Everything's really skyrocketed"

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Sobering new numbers show how hard inflation is hitting every consumer across the nation, including in the Bay Area.

Small businesses are feeling the impact of higher prices and customers are feeling it, too.

"Everything's really skyrocketed," said Adam Keeler, manager at Bronco Billy's Pizza in Fremont.

"The price of wheat has gone crazy, everything is just dominoeing," he said.

"The price of meat has gone crazy. Chicken, which didn't use to be so expensive, is now pretty expensive," Keeler shared with NBC Bay Area. "Cheese is crazy expensive."

Inflation is taking a bigger bite out of paychecks than it has in decades, and prices are not likely to drop anytime soon. Scott Budman has the details and latest numbers.

Consumer prices in the Bay Area jumped another five percent in April, and the U.S. Bureau of Labor says inflation in the area is at its highest level in 21 years.

For small businesses like Bronco Billy's that means higher costs and more competition for employees as companies pay more in wages, too.

"There are just not enough people to do all of the work," Keeler said. "So firms are offering higher base salaries, and poaching experienced workers from other firms."

The good news is that customers are still loyal -- for now.

"I mean, it's 10 bucks for a small pizza," said Eli Pitta from Union City, "and for us its worth it to support local, small businesses."

Technology is helping local restaurants cut costs a bit. There are now kiosks that allow customers to order food with a credit card without contact with the restaurant, which means no credit card fees.

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