Thousands of people wait all year for that most cherished occasion: Girl Scout Cookie time. It is not the day they become a year older, or celebrate a special event from the past. They wait for their favorite cookies to become available for a limited time. But this year, they could come with a heftier price tag.
Inflation is everywhere, from gas prices to housing costs. Luxury taxes are being attached to everything from cigarettes to feminine products. One place people hate to see price increases on are their snack foods. Girl Scout cookie prices have held steady for years. This year, however, the $4 box is a thing of the past in two areas of California and one in Massachusetts.
According to Today there are specific reasons the price went from $4 to $5 per box. There are 112 councils who set the prices for their area based on certain criteria and thus is the reason for fluctuating prices in different regions. The council is hoping that the 25 percent increase will mean a steady price point, as has been happened in previous years.
Jan Goldstein, chief marketing officer at Girls Scouts of Eastern Massachusetts, gave a statement to Today.
“The No. 1 factor was us hearing feedback from adult volunteers that girls had such a great experience selling cookies, but they weren’t earning enough money from them. The council sees the increase as an opportunity to offset natural price increases for running the cookie program — from the cost of raw materials and bakery production to transportation.”
While the rest of the cookie market has repeatedly increased prices of their products, the Girl Scouts have not increased prices for several years. According to Goldstein, they believe the 25 percent hike will last them for another few years as well.
January 21-February 14 are the only three weeks out of 52 that Girl Scouts sell favorites such as Thin Mints, Shortbread, and Tagalongs. For 70 years, people have waited for the new year to roll around so they can find their favorite Girl Scout Daisy, Brownie, Junior, Cadette, or Senior.
CNBC reports on whether or not the new cost will sway people in their decision on the purchase of these coveted treats. Out of all the respondents who participated, 36 percent will still buy them, while 45 percent will opt out. There are 11 percent who have no opinion either way.
Before the increase, individual troops selling the confectionary treats earned 62 cents per box. The areas within the council opting for the increase will now earn an average of 90 cents per box.
There are areas of California and in Hawaii that have already changed their prices from $4 to $5. Each of the councils who decided in favor of the price increase did so after realizing that it was becoming difficult to supply their commodity at a decade-old cost.
“Our Girl Scout troops need a raise,” said Elizabeth Locke-Thomas, executive vice president of the Redlands-based Girl Scouts of San Gorgonio Council, which serves about 10,000 girls ages 5 to 17 in Riverside and San Bernardino counties. “We want our girls to be able to fund the programs they work so hard to earn. The $4 box just doesn’t stretch the way it used to. What we pay the baker has gone up 22 percent in the past 12 years. We’re living in a world where commodities like butter, flour and eggs continue to go up and up.”
In addition, according to Locke-Thomas, another benefit to raising prices in this area is that they will be able to restore an outreach program serving low-families in the area. It closed seven years ago because of funding issues.
With costs of labor and materials, and shipping and packaging on a steady incline, it can be difficult for anyone to keep up and still make a profit. Each troop uses the money to fund projects, troop trips, and more. Without a sizable profit, these activities are an impossibility for most young girls. Earning a profit from selling goods is the goal of any business, and the Girl Scout troops are no different.
[Photo by John Moore/Getty Image]