Butter priced at $3.18 in 1972 $21.58 in 2022

Butter Inflation Calculator

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Prices for Butter, 1972-2022 ($3.18)

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, prices for butter are 578.71% higher in 2022 versus 1972 (a $18.40 difference in value).

The current national average price is $3.18 for "Butter, salted, grade AA, stick, per lb. (453.6 gm)". This data is collected by a national survey and can vary from region to region.

Between 1972 and 2022: Butter experienced an average inflation rate of 3.90% per year. This rate of change indicates significant inflation. In other words, butter costing $3.18 in the year 1972 would cost $21.58 in 2022 for an equivalent purchase. Compared to the overall inflation rate of 3.94% during this same period, inflation for butter was lower.

In the year 1972: Pricing changed by -0.45%, which is significantly below the average yearly change for butter during the 1972-2022 time period. Compared to inflation for all items in 1972 (3.27%), inflation for butter was much lower.

Price Inflation for Butter since 1939

Consumer Price Index, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Years with the largest changes in pricing: 1946 (41.08%), 1998 (31.11%), and 2004 (29.15%).

Price history

The average price for Butter is calculated from a weighted average of retailer data collected by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Inflation rate is also calculated by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The table below shows average prices and their corresponding "real" prices adjusted for inflation rate. To understand how price levels differ from inflation rates, see this article published by the BLS.

Average prices for Butter, salted, grade AA, stick, per lb. (453.6 gm):

YearAverage price (Butter)Inflation adjusted price (2022 dollars)
2012$3.38$3.38
2011$3.60$3.35
2010$3.12$3.36
2009$2.84$3.37
2008$3.14$3.45
2007$3.03$3.49
2006$2.92$3.35
2005$3.28$3.49
2004$3.49$3.66
2003$2.81$3.81
2002$3.07$3.86
2001$3.30$3.77
2000$2.52$3.64
1999$2.65$3.57
1998$2.86$3.73
1997$2.17$3.70
1996$2.05$3.73
1995$1.61$3.68
1994$1.60$3.79
1993$1.66$3.75
1992$1.83$3.88
1991$1.94$3.96
1990$1.99$3.97
1989$2.13$3.98
1988$2.16$4.03
1987$2.17$4.04
1986$2.15$4.08
1985$2.12$4.04
1984$2.11$4.05
1983$2.06$4.07
1982$2.05$4.08
1981$1.99$4.06
1980$1.88$4.12

View price changes for other categories
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Buying power of $3.18 since 1972

Below are calculations of equivalent buying power for Butter, over time, for $3.18 beginning in 1972. Each of the amounts below is equivalent in terms of what it could buy at the time:

YearUSD ValueInflation Rate
1972$3.18-0.45%
1973$3.345.12%
1974$3.453.12%
1975$3.758.82%
1976$4.6223.24%
1977$4.895.69%
1978$5.4210.87%
1979$6.1313.14%
1980$6.8912.38%
1981$7.417.64%
1982$7.582.27%
1983$7.671.17%
1984$7.862.43%
1985$7.941.08%
1986$7.970.30%
1987$8.111.79%
1988$8.08-0.31%
1989$8.090.03%
1990$7.59-6.18%
1991$7.38-2.71%
1992$7.12-3.55%
1993$6.68-6.10%
1994$6.39-4.48%
1995$6.603.38%
1996$8.2925.58%
1997$8.846.65%
1998$11.5931.11%
1999$11.23-3.12%
2000$10.47-6.79%
2001$13.2226.32%
2002$12.01-9.13%
2003$11.16-7.10%
2004$14.4229.15%
2005$14.22-1.35%
2006$13.19-7.28%
2007$13.15-0.28%
2008$13.734.39%
2009$12.74-7.17%
2010$14.0710.39%
2011$16.2415.45%
2012$15.11-6.97%
2013$15.291.18%
2014$17.5214.60%
2015$17.942.40%
2016$18.060.71%
2017$18.522.53%
2018$18.791.44%
2019$19.001.12%
2020$19.160.84%
2021$19.14-0.10%
2022$21.5812.76%*
* Not final. See inflation summary for latest details.

Raw Consumer Price Index data from U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics for Butter:

Year193919401941194219431944194519461947194819491950195119521953195419551956195719581959196019611962196319641965196619671968196919701971197219731974197519761977197819791980198119821983198419851986198719881989199019911992199319941995199619971998199920002001200220032004200520062007200820092010201120122013201420152016201720182019202020212022
CPI14.50816.14618.46921.26923.43122.26922.54631.80836.08538.89232.50832.68536.69238.33835.60032.62331.97732.70833.69233.66234.15434.00034.72334.21534.15434.50035.05438.13839.19239.50040.00040.95441.46241.27743.39244.74648.69260.00863.42370.31579.55489.40096.23198.41599.569101.992103.092103.400105.254104.931104.96298.47795.80892.40886.76982.88585.685107.600114.754150.454145.754135.862171.615155.954144.877187.115184.592171.162170.683178.170165.401182.593210.795196.102198.410227.375232.833234.484240.409243.882246.620248.691248.454280.149

Adjust butter prices for inflation

Start with the inflation rate formula:

CPI in 2022 / CPI in 1972 * 1972 USD value = 2022 USD value

Then plug in historical CPI values from above. The CPI for Butter was 41.277 in the year 1972 and 280.149 in 2022:

280.149 / 41.277 * $3.18 = $21.58

Therefore, according to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, $3.18 in 1972 has the same "purchasing power" as $21.58 in 2022 (in the CPI category of Butter).


Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics began tracking the Consumer Price Index for Butter in 1939. In addition to butter, the index produces monthly data on changes in prices paid by urban consumers for a variety of goods and services.

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