Here's How Much Your Food Bill Has Gone Up (Again)

Pretty disheartening news ahead of the feasting season of Christmas.
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The price of your average grocery bill has increased again – this time to a new high of 12.4% just ahead of Christmas.

The price of food has been one of the primary drivers of the cost of living crisis, along with the soaring energy bills.

Now, new data from the British Retail Consortium (BRC) shows that food inflation has increased from 11.6% last month to 12.4% for November – a new record since the stats started being collected back in 2005.

The current rate of food inflation is 7.4% higher than this time last year, too.

The BRC-Nielsen IQ Shop Price Index has also revealed that fresh food has climbed in price by the largest amount – last month, it was 13.3% inflation, now it is at 14.3%.

Eggs, dairy and meat have been some of the largest drivers of the increase in cost. Coffee prices have climbed too, due to high input costs.

The BRC also predicted that winter will look “increasingly bleak as pressures on prices continue unabated”, even though the Bank of England has predicted that they may start to fall again in 2023.

Food inflation is one of the primary drivers of the cost of living crisis
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Food inflation is one of the primary drivers of the cost of living crisis

According to PA news agency, Mike Watkins, the head of retailer and business insight at NielsenIQ said: “WIth prices still rising, the cost of Christmas will be higher this year and shoppers will be managing their budgets more closely than at any time since the start of the cost of living crisis.

“Retailers are now responding by offering seasonal savings and price cuts and will be hopeful of an uptick in shopper spend as we move into December.”

This news comes as the UK is now in recession – according to chancellor Jeremy Hunt – while Europe’s energy crisis continues to hang over the general public as temperatures drop this winter.

The governor of the Bank of England, Andrew Bailey, also warned in August that people were going to see an “apocalyptic” rise in prices.

According to market research company Kantar, the average household was already facing a £643 climb in their annual grocery bill to £5,625 if they were to carry on buying the same items last month.

These new stats show food inflation is actually higher than the average inflation rate right now, as this stands at 11.1%.

The chair of Marks & Spencer, Archie Norman, said back in May that one of the reasons food prices are rising so much is because of the supply chain issues and surging energy costs triggered by the Ukraine war.

“What’s happening is global prices are rising, it’s not to do with UK food so much as the effect of freight costs, wheat prices, oil and energy prices knocking onto almost everything,” Norman explained.

“As a consequence, all food retailers in the UK are – because we operate on very thin margins – going to have to reluctantly allow some food price inflation to run through the system.”