NAPLES, Fla. - The price of pizza is going up for at least one major chain. It's not because the cheese or the sauce are more expensive, but because they now have to pay more to provide employees with health insurance.
As a result of the passage of the Affordable Care Act, the Founder and CEO of Papa John's says they'll have to increase the price of pizza up to 14 cents each.
"We're not supportive of Obamacare, like most businesses in our industry, but our business model and unit economics are about as ideal as you can get for a food company to absorb Obamacare," CEO John Schnatter said,
President Obama's new healthcare law demands that companies with more than 50 full-time employees provide health insurance by 2014, or pay a penalty. Companies like White Castle and McDonald's had spoken out before its passage, concerned the change could be devastating for profits.
But we found the price hike won't be the norm for all businesses. For Rossopomodoro in Naples, being a small businesses of about 30 employees is a relief, as it exempts them from the mandate.
"You know, corporations, typically the servers, bartenders, everybody else, bussers, they can't even get insurance through the company anyway," bartender Eduardo Lopes said. "So usually, they'll go off on their own and get their own insurance,so I don't really see why they would have to raise the price of food to compensate."
Truluck's Seafood, Steak, and Crabhouse on the other hand, employs 70.
"Having employees insured is extremely important to us," Managing Partner Rick Rinella said.
And whether they have to pay more for insurance, or more for the food they serve, Rinella said you won't see any difference on the menu.
"We're not going to take a healthcare bill that is passed by the Legislature and raise prices in order to cover that," Rinella said. "That's just not a good business plan."
While none of the customers at Papa Johns wanted to go on camera, a few did say that a 14-cent increase for the price of their pizza wasn't enough to stop them from coming back.