This pandemic has affected so many different parts of our lives. We've seen shortages of grocery items, we've gone through stay-at-home orders and other similar protocols, it's changed the way students go to school, we've seen layoffs, and the list goes on.

Now, the latest that we've seen is the rise in prices of meat at the store. We're seeing pretty significant rises. I have seen these changes at the store myself, and I don't even consider myself an expert. So, since I'm not an expert, I decided to ask a couple of people that do know a bit more on the subject.

First, I spoke with Brendyn Todd, the owner of Brendyn's BBQ in Nacogdoches. He said that he's been noticing a big change in his business due to the rising meat prices. When I asked him about his brisket - one of his regular items on his menu - he said, "I was paying $3.22 to $3.40 per pound for Angus Choice brisket. Now, It's gone up to over $6.00 per pound. I'm paying essentially double what I was paying."

He said that this has caused him to really look at his menu, which isn't necessarily a bad thing . "If brisket prices continue to rise, and get to a ridiculous amount, we'll modify our menu." He didn't go into specifics on that front, but he did mention that they were already testing out a few different menu options that his customers may see on the menu in the future.

But, Brendyn's BBQ hasn't been the only business affected, and Brendyn isn't the only local BBQ expert to notice the change. I didn't have to go very far at all to find another person affected...actually, I just had to walk down the hall to my coworker, Sean Ericson. If you don't know Sean for his on-air work, you may know him as the owner/operator of Grill 105. He does grills and catering work, along with competing in state and national BBQ competitions.

"As a caterer going to the store, I've seen briskets there that were less than $2.00 per pound go up over $5.00 per pound. And the consumers are all able to see those changes, too." The example he gave was that people were seeing racks of baby-back ribs sell for $20 per rack. "Before this, they were normally $10."

So, as you can see, we're definitely not immune to those rising prices here behind the Pine Curtain. It's eye-opening to see this come about. We can just hope that it'll all even out soon.