Meat in supermarkets, beer and wine in pubs – what is getting more expensive?

·2 min read
Meat in supermarkets, beer and wine in pubs – what is getting more expensive?

Energy prices drove most of the record rises in inflation seen last month, but costs in supermarkets, restaurants and pubs also added to the pressure felt by households.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) revealed that inflation hit 9% in the year to April on Wednesday, measured by the Consumer Prices Index (CPI), which is thought to be the highest for 40 years.

Most of the rise was due to the 54% hike in the energy price cap, but price on all but two of the more than 80 items that the ONS tracks have risen over the past year.

According to Retail Price Index figures – which are slightly different to the CPI – the price of unprocessed potatoes dropped 1.2% in the year to April, while audio-visual equipment became 3% less expensive.

For everything else prices went up. Overall food prices rose 6.8%, the figures show, with meats, oils and some animal products especially hit.

The rise across meat categories was clear: lamb was the worst hit, up 14.2%, followed by poultry (10.4%) and beef (9.8%) while pork got off with a lighter 4.9% rise.

Butter prices rose 11.8% and the price of oils and other fats soared 18.2% over the last year after fears of a shortage sparked by the war in Ukraine.

The price of fresh milk also rose rapidly, up 13.2%, while sugar and preserves rose 12.2%.

Away from food, households were also hit by an 8.1% extra price on their restaurant bills, while the price of takeaways and snacks rose 6.5%.

ECONOMY Inflation
(PA Graphics)

Drinking at a pub got more expensive too, with the cost of beer up 4.9% and wine rising 6.2%. Alcohol prices increased less rapidly in off licences and supermarkets.

Food and Drink Federation chief executive Karen Betts said that the figures are slightly worse than food manufacturers had feared.

“This is a very worrying time for many households, and food and drink businesses are continuing to do everything they can to contain food-price inflation,” she said.

“Ingredient price rises have been relentless for more than a year now, as a result of pressures in the global supply chain caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.

“The war in Ukraine, with both Ukraine and Russia important suppliers of commodities like wheat and food oils, as well as energy and fertiliser, has made the situation worse.”

ECONOMY Inflation
(PA Graphics)

Energy prices are also feeding into the rising food costs – farmers and food factories need gas, petrol and electricity to run their businesses and have to pass these costs onto customers.

This is also the case for many other products.

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