Jerry Rauschelbach, owner of Arthur Bryant’s Barbeque, said he's urging customers to avoid beef. The price of the restaurant’s famous brisket sandwich is now almost $18, up from the original price of $10.95. Rauschelbach said customers are rightfully upset about the significant price hike.
"We think $17.95 for a 12-ounce sandwich is ridiculous, but so is the cost that I’m paying for it," Rauschelbach said on "Fox & Friends" Thursday.
He has since hung a sign in his restaurant explaining to customers what they can do alternatively.
"They can order other meats," Rauschelbach told host Steve Doocy. "They can call their congressmen and ask why things are the way they are."
"No one’s making them order it. It’s OK to order something else. The issue is supply and demand."
The sign also notes that complaining to restaurant staff about the high cost will not affect the pricing.
Rauschelbach hopes encouraging his customers to order other food will decrease the demand for beef and, ultimately, bring costs down.
"It would be amazing in this country if everybody didn’t drive their gas vehicles for one day -- what that would do for the price of gasoline," he said, drawing a comparison to the ongoing fuel crisis.
"The reality of the fact is that if you keep doing what you’re doing, you can’t change things."
Rauschelbach said that despite the price hike and his sign encouraging customers to order cheaper meats, people are still ordering the $18 brisket sandwich.
He has seen, however, a decrease of about 5-7% in the amount of brisket the restaurant has had to purchase and said prices have eased slightly over the last few months.
He warned that the easing will likely end as spring approaches and people start grilling more at home.
"When we open up the country to all the grillers and the smokers, demand again will be high, and I expect the prices to go back up again."