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Cost of candy soars by record 13.1 percent right before Halloween

Halloween candy is for sale at a Harris Teeter grocery store on October 17, 2022 in Washington, DC. According to the most recent inflation report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the price of Halloween candy is up over 13 percent compared to last year.Drew Angerer/Getty

Giving out treats this Halloween will be a lot more expensive than usual.

The cost of candy and chewing gum jumped 13.1 percent in September from last year, the most ever, according to the latest US inflation data. This comes just before what’s arguably candy’s most important holiday — Halloween.

The culprit is expensive sugar. US refined sugar prices have soared this year after drought hurt beet-sugar crops in northern states. Chocolate has also been hit by inflation in recent months, partly because of higher costs for chocolate makers. Supply chain chaos caused by the pandemic and then the war in Ukraine have been spilling over into cocoa markets.

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Sweets aren’t the only thing seeing a jump. US consumer prices rose by more than forecast to a 40-year high in September. The core consumer price index, which excludes food and energy, increased 6.6 percent from a year ago, the highest level since 1982.