Business owners say inflation is driving up the cost of Christmas trees this year

(WIVB) — With Christmas around the corner, people are heading out to find their perfect Christmas tree. Local businesses say shoppers should expect to spend a little more this year.

Depending on where people buy their Christmas tree, they could end up paying around $5 to $10 more than last year. Business owners say everything involved in getting these trees ready, costs more, and they have to raise the prices.

“We knew with fuel jumping in the spring like it did, just to go get it and take care of it was going to add $5 to $8 a tree no matter what,” said Jacob Miller, owner of Jake’s Greenhouse.

Miller said a lot of that has to do with inflation. From getting the seeds to grow the trees, to the fertilizer, to labor costs, he said it all adds up.

“From fuel, to fertilize the tree, to mowing that tree, to spraying that tree, to trimming that tree,” Miller said. “We do the best we can to pay our bills here to stay here, so we’re here next year.”

And that cost trickles down to the shopper, who can expect to spend around $10 more for a Christmas tree this holiday season.

“Just a lot of the trees — not with the price of raising them and shipping them, is causing a lot of higher costs, whether you sell them per foot or by the tree,” Miller added.

Paul Ziarnowski, who buys a tree from Jake’s each year, said it’s more important to him that he supports a local business.

“Price-wise? I’ll tell you what, these trees are like a fraction of what you’d get at some of the other high end shops toward the city,” he said. “We were going to wait until after our trip, but we thought, ‘Eh we’ll catch it early, take care of it.”

Miller said that everyone has a different way of buying their tree.

“Everyone does it different. Some people do it by the tree, some people do it by the foot,” Miller said. “But all of them work very hard to make this tree special for your home for a month or two months for you to enjoy, so how do you put a price on that as well?”

Miller says he’s also still dealing with a shortage of Christmas trees. He said it’ll be a few more years before he can open back up the U-Cut part of his business.

Sarah Minkewicz is an Emmy-nominated reporter and Buffalo native who has been a part of the News 4 team since 2019. Follow Sarah on Twitter @SarahMinkewicz and click here to see more of her work.

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