Due to higher feed costs for chickens, hogs and cattle, U.S. food prices will rise by at least 7 percent in the upcoming year, Reuters reported.

A group of food-industry economists said 2009 will be the third year in a row that food prices rose higher then the U.S. inflation rate — which is now at its highest since 1990.

At a recent teleconference, arranged by a group of major foodmakers, economists predict that food inflation could be 7 to 8 percent.

This year's corn, wheat and soybean crops — major ingredients in feed rations — are said to fetch prices at the farm gate that are double their 2005 levels.

"We've been losing money for more than a year," said Bill Roenigk, economist for the Chicken Council. "We need to recover these feed costs."

Read more of this story from Reuters.