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Friday, July 19, 2024

Inflation falls, food prices soar

Food prices continue to rise at record rates, according to latest figures from the Office of National Statistics (ONS).

The annual inflation rate for groceries dropped slightly to 19.1 percent in the year to April 2023, compared with 19.2 percent in March 2023.

Indicative modelled estimates suggest it is still the second highest seen for over 45 years, when the rate in August 1977 was estimated to be 21.9 percent.

It comes as the overall UK inflation rate fell sharply to hit single figures for the first time since last August. At 8.7 percent, however, it remains higher than other countries including Germany (7.6 percent), France (6.9 percent), and the US (4.9 percent).

ONS Chief Economist Grant Fitzner said: “The rate of inflation fell notably as the large energy price rises seen last year were not repeated this April. However, prices in general remain substantially higher than they were this time last year, with annual food price inflation near historic highs.”

Cheese (39 percent), eggs (37 percent), milk (33 percent), potatoes (28 percent) and chicken (23 percent) are among the many grocery basket regulars that have skyrocketed in the past year.

According to the ONS, some shoppers are taking actions to reduce their outgoings, with around four in 10 adults (44 percent) saying they are spending less on food shopping and essentials.

Meanwhile, around half (48 percent) of adults said they were buying less when shopping for food. That is according to the office’s latest Public opinions and social trends bulletin for May 4 to May 14, 2023.

With around two thirds (67 percent) of adults in Great Britain reporting that their cost of living has increased in the past month, more than nine in 10 (96 percent) have experienced an increase in the price of food shopping.

The latest ONS data coincides with a report by Kantar which revealed UK shoppers were spending £833 more on their food shop compared to the same period last year.

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