Food price inflation hits double figures
Shoppers are paying 10.6% more for food than they were a year ago, according to the British Retail Consortium-Nielson IQ index.
Shop price inflation reached a record high at 5.7% in September, up from 5.1% in August. Both the shop price inflation and food inflation figures are the highest since the index began in 2005.
Food price inflation rose from 9.3% last month as the war in Ukraine pushed up the price of animal feed, fertiliser and vegetable oil. Fresh food products cost a record 12.1% more than last year, the highest rate for the category on record.
The price of store cupboard staples such as pasta and tinned tomatoes has gone up a record 8.6% since last year, up from an inflation figure of 7.8% last month.
‘Government must freeze business rates’
Helen Dickinson OBE, chief executive of the British Retail Consortium, says: “Retailers are battling huge cost pressures from the weak pound, rising energy bills and global commodity prices, high transport costs, a tight labour market and the cumulative burden of government-imposed costs.
“And, with business rates set to jump by 10% next April, squeezed retailers face an additional £800m in unaffordable tax rises. Government must urgently freeze the business rates multiplier to give retailers more scope to do more to help households.”
Mike Watkins, head of retailer and business insight at NielsenIQ, says: “With food and household energy prices continuing to rise, it’s no surprise that NielsenIQ data shows that 76% of consumers are saying they expect to be moderately or severely affected by the cost-of-living crisis over the next three months, up from 57% in the summer.
“So households will be looking for savings to help manage their personal finances this autumn and we expect shoppers to become more cautious about discretionary spend, adding to pressure in the retail sector.”