Food prices rise at fastest rate in 14 years – Stats NZ

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Food prices have risen at their fastest rate in 14 years over the past year.

Stats NZ says food inflation was 10.1 percent for the year ended October, the highest annual increase since 2008.

The increases in grocery prices and fruit and vegetable prices were the two main drivers over the period.

“This was the highest annual increase since November 2008,” Stats NZ consumer prices senior manager Nicola Growden said.

“Previous patterns of seasonal price movement for fruit and vegetables suggest it’s more typical to see a larger fall in fruit and vegetables for the October month.

“Increasing prices for barn-raised eggs, cheddar cheese, and two-minute noodles were the largest drivers within grocery food.”

Within fruit and vegetables, potatoes, bananas, and cabbages influenced prices the most.

Food prices make up just under a fifth of the overall inflation rate.

Compared with October 2021:
  • Grocery food prices increased by 9.7 percent
  • Fruit and vegetable prices increased by 17 percent
  • Restaurant meals and ready-to-eat food prices increased by 7.5 percent
  • Meat, poultry, and fish prices increased by 10 percent
  • Non-alcoholic beverage prices increased by 8.7 percent

For the month of October, prices were 0.8 percent higher than September.

But the monthly price rise was broad-based, with increases seen in 125 of the 162 items Stats NZ measured.

In October 2021 Stats NZ observed price rises in 82 of the items it measured, with the other 80 all falling.