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WATCH: 2012 Taco Bell Receipt Reignites Discussions on Inflationary Impact

Fast Food and Inflation: An Artful Digital Revisit to 2012 Taco Bell Prices

A digital echo of yesteryears, particularly of the year 2012 came to the forefront as a Taco Bell invoice made its way around the internet, stirring up discussions about the sweeping wave of inflation that has made goods more high-priced. An aspiring music artist with the username LovelyOcean managed to pique the curiosity of her TikTok audience when she shared a video of a Taco Bell receipt from 2012.

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The archival video exhibited that two portions of beefy five-layer burritos could be purchased for a mere $2.59, a sight hard to come by in the current economic landscape. This walk down memory lane was paired with clever hashtags that communicated LovelyOcean’s dissatisfaction over the inflated prices, and how it had put her favourite Taco Bell meals out of reach.

Since its inception last Sunday, the video has carved out a healthy niche in the digital domain, amassing a stunning 647,000 views, and sparking intense dialogue about the accelerated escalation in the prices of popular Taco Bell items since 2012.

In a demonstration of how the situation has changed over the decade, one beefy five-layer burrito currently carries a price tag that reads approximately $3.69. However, this number is not definitive as the cost fluctuates between states.

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Taco Bell’s website points out that the store offers a limited selection of items including a bean burrito, chicken enchilada burrito, and a cheesy bean and rice burrito that still fall below the $2.59 price point. These, however, seem to be exceptions in today’s list of offerings, due to the general rise in prices.

In an effort geared towards addressing the grievances aired by customers about high prices, Taco Bell announced a comprehensive revamp of its Cravings Value Menu earlier this month. The revamped version is designed to bring back value spending and includes ten fan-favourites, each priced under $3.

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Drawing the limelight in this value-centric modification are the Double Stacked Taco at $1.99, the Stacker at $2.19, and the Loaded Beef Nachos at $2.99, all served at participating U.S. outposts, delivering a burst of flavours without causing a dent in one’s wallet.

However, the spotlight does not dim just yet. The updated Cravings Value Menu also features the Cheesy Double Beef Burrito and the 3-Cheese Chicken Flatbread Melt Burrito, luxuriously wrapped in flavorsome goodness, tailored to fit the budget at $2.79 and $2.29 respectively.

Taylor Montgomery, Taco Bell’s Chief Marketing Officer, voiced the company’s eagerness to enhance its value proposal through a combination of innovative menu options and digital offerings. He emphasized that Taco Bell is in the business of delivering quality and abundance but without compromising on price point.

Montgomery re-emphasized the brand’s commitment in his assertive remarks, ‘We are diligently working to introduce novel methods of saving across our menu, doubled with exclusive digital opportunities. There’s more to expect from us this year. As far as delivering value, we definitely walk the talk, and we’re only warming up.’

This video certainly set the stage for renewed debates and discussions around the significant price surges and the inflationary trends over the last decade. The rise in inflation rates has been at its zenith under the current administration, with 2022 witnessing a record high at 9.1%.

Although a deceleration was noticed as it tapered to 3.4% by December, the squeeze of inflation has remained palpable in everyday economic activities. The impact has been particularly stark in the food industry, where a sharp 33.7% hike was recorded since last year.

Further highlighting these pressures, it was found that since the outset of the previous year, there has been a notable 33.7% increase, which pertains specifically to food prices.

The economic sentiment among average Americans seems to reflect this reality quite cogently, with multiple surveys indicating persistently unfavorable perceptions of the economy, pointing to a deep-seated concern for the financial stability of the common man.

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