(WGHP) — The price of food has gone up 8.8 percent, according to US Department of Labor statistics.

Many people in the Piedmont Triad are feeling the pinch of inflation.

And those in our rural communities and communities of color are being hit the hardest, according to a new report.

Officials at the Salvation Army in Burlington said there are specific items like meat and dairy products that are forcing more people to get help.

Some people across the Triad are struggling to ensure they have food on their tables as more money is being taken out of their pockets because of the rise in inflation.

Right now, consumers are spending more on electricity, gas and grocery bills. According to a report by Bank of America, communities of color and people living in rural communities are being hit hardest by this wave of inflation because often it comes down to deciding whether to pay a bill or buy groceries.

Anthony Martin used to have a home in Asheboro but said the increased cost of living forced him into homelessness a few weeks ago.

He’s also had to significantly limit the amount of food and types of food he buys.

“I don’t buy coffee, which I love. I have to just cut back on everything in general just to try to make ends meet,” Martin said.

Martin said the price of his groceries has doubled over the past few months. He’s been getting help from Open Door Ministries in High Point.

He’s one of many who now rely on local organizations to help during this time.

Irma Garcia was at the Salvation Army in Burlington.

“We have like meat, scallops, ground beef, and then we have turkey as well,” Garcia said.

Garcia, like many other clients there, has been coming for specific items. Things she could once afford to buy at the store herself have gotten too high

“The flour to make tortillas has also gone up. A lot of fruits and vegetables also have gone up. Eggs especially, too,” Garcia said.

She said she’s been buying fewer vegetables for her family and turning to other nutritional foods instead tthat can last longer and are less costly.

It’s much of the same for Christy Waller’s family.

“If we wanted ice cream or something like that, we would probably not pick it up and pick up something we needed more like rice or a type of noodle or something like that just to keep us full,” Waller said.