Attention shoppers: Price hikes are ahead, but consumer companies hope you won’t notice

Inflation is coming.

Look no further than Coca-Cola and Procter & Gamble sharing plans this week to raise prices to offset rising commodity costs. The costs of raw materials, ranging from lumber to resin, are surging, so companies are taking steps to protect profits.

The price increases follow a year of surging demand for a host of items from paper towels to jars of peanut butter. Sales of consumer packaged goods rose 9.4% to $1.53 trillion last year, according to the Consumer Brands Association. Many manufacturers pulled back on advertising and promotions as they tried to keep up with demand, gaining market share without much marketing.

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