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Gluten-free bars and canned cocktails added to inflation basket

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16/03/2020
Gluten-free cereal bars, fake tan and pre-mixed cocktails have been added to the basket of goods used by the Office for National Statistics to calculate consumer price inflation.

Each year the ONS decides on a basket of goods to reflect consumer buying habits. The ONS tracks the prices of goods in this basket to calculate consumer price inflation – the rate at which prices rise or fall.

The basket shows products which are popular with consumers and those that have fallen out of favour.

Other notable additions this year include re-usable bottles and mugs to highlight the trend away from single-use bottles and mugs, and vegetable crisps.

DVD and Blu-ray players no longer get separate entries on the list and are now being combined, while the MP4 player has been removed in favour of a more generic portable music player.

Crumpets have replaced individual fruit pies in the bread and cereals class, while a beef roasting joint has replaced a beef topside joint.

Laura Suter, personal finance analyst at investment platform AJ Bell, said: “The nation’s eating habits show that we’re moving towards healthier and gluten-free food, with gluten-free cereal being included for the first time to represent this trend, adding to the existing non-dairy milk and ‘Free From’ items on the list.

“The burger craze in the UK is also clearly slowing, as separate entries for takeaway burgers and eat-in burgers have been merged, while vegetable crisps have been added to the list to reflect healthier choices we’re making. What’s more Mr Kipling style individual fruit pies have been ditched, and instead crumpets have been added to the list.”

Items removed from the basket in 2020 include frozen imported legs of lamb after research suggested stock levels have reduced over recent years.

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