Rising cost of diesel could mean higher prices for consumers: 'The prices are outrageous'

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- The state of Texas is approaching a record for the highest gas prices the state has ever seen, but unleaded gasoline isn't the only fuel source on the rise.

Diesel is also approaching a record-high in Texas, as AAA shows it currently sits at an average of $4.65 a gallon. The record, which was set on July 17, 2008, remains $4.78.

Prices like these impact everyone, even if they don't drive a vehicle that requires diesel fuel.

"Diesel affects everybody," said restaurateur Chris Shepherd.

The cost of producing and transporting goods to stores, restaurants, and more are all impacted by the rising price of diesel. The price of a gallon in Texas has gone up $1.08 since Feb. 9.

Shepherd says consumers haven't seen the full effect of this recent rise, but expects they will soon.

"I would say we'll start to see the impact within a week," he said. "Our distribution chain will not be able to take (these prices) on the chin for very long."

In addition to the restaurant business, farmers are also being hit hard by the rising cost of diesel. Sam Moffett, who owns Shirttail Creek Farm in Brenham, says the cost of doing business has gone way up in the last month.

"We, along with other producers, are seriously looking at the books and looking to see where we can cover this," Moffett said. "Price increases are going to be inevitable for us."

Shirttail Creek Farms distributes its products across Texas, which requires diesel fuel. They also rely on diesel to run tractors and other equipment on their property. Moffett said their diesel bill for daily operations has increased more than $1,500 in the last month.

"The prices are outrageous," he said. "It's looking like it's only going to get worse from here."

Which means customers of farms, restaurants, or nearly any other industry should expect to see higher prices in the coming weeks.

"It takes a lot to get food from the farm to restaurants, to grocery stores, and to distribution centers," explained Shepherd. "You're going to start to see a lot more fuel surcharges, which will impact the consumer no matter what."

SEE ALSO:

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Pain at the pump is hitting Houstonians as gas prices rise

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