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Small businesses being hit hard by inflation

The Sweet Lair - Menasha
Posted at 4:22 PM, Jan 18, 2023
and last updated 2023-01-24 13:52:22-05

MENASHA (NBC 26) — While small business owners are having to deal with record inflation driving up the cost of business, many customers have also had to think twice about their spending habits.

Inflation is on everyone's mind, and for The Sweet Lair, a bakery and board game café in Menasha, it’s been difficult.

“That's been a big struggle. I don't want to overprice customers, but we also need to pay all of our bills, our employees,” said Sweet Lair Owner, Bri Lutz.

Eric Broten, the Fox Cities Chamber Director of Economic Development, explained the choices that businesses have to combat inflation.

“They either have to absorb those costs, or pass them on to consumers,” said Broten.

Here’s how one Menasha small business has struggled through inflation.

Ultimately, that can lead small businesses to make those tough choices.

“We just recently changed our hours and our menu, mostly due to the inflation costs but other new business things too,” said Lutz.

We know businesses have to watch their bottom line, but consumers have one too.

“Everybody has a limit as to what they can spend,” said Lutz.

All eyes are on egg prices as the national average for a dozen has more than doubled since 2021.

“With us being a bakery, egg prices have definitely affected us,” said Lutz. “You're now thinking about, how do I cover that, how do I adjust to offset the cost.”

That led to some changes for The Sweet Lair, such as reducing their hours on Wednesdays and Thursdays and producing more items that don't require eggs.

They've remained positive about their business.

“We still all struggle so I think it's hard to see the future and what's to come of that,” said Lutz. “We're really just here to serve the community and we're falling back on the community to help serve us as well.”

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