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Beef, veggies and taco kits: Food prices are soaring

shopping trolley and money
The Frugl Grocery Price Index aims to take a focused look at what is really happening to households at a grocery level. (Source: Getty)

It’s no secret that trips to the supermarket have become more expensive in the past 12 months, with weather events, supply chain issues and high commodity prices driving up the cost of food.

New data shows some categories are rising much faster than others, with some shoppers getting hurt worse than others.

Detailed grocery data released by Frugl ahead of Consumer Price Index (CPI) data next week showed beef had seen the sharpest increase in 12 months, soaring by 14.6 per cent.

frugl grocery increases
Source: Frugl

However, beef prices also showed signs of slowing down on a quarterly basis, backing off by 1.58 per cent in the three months to June.

Household and cleaning product prices have also rocketed up by 13.67 per cent in the 12 months to June, although prices stabilised in the past quarter.

Pantry items also saw explosive price growth in the past 12 months, rising by 13.17 per cent.

These prices are still going up - increasing by another 6.08 per cent in the past quarter - with the report noting “significant” price increases in some rice products, as well as popular wheat based-meal kits - such as taco kits - and pasta.

The report said there appeared to be a “strong link” between the price increases of these products and the war in Ukraine, which is a major global supplier of wheat, vegetable oils and fertiliser.

On a quarterly basis, fruit and vegetables saw the steepest growth - 7.48 per cent - driven by weather issues and high fuel prices.

Lettuces weren’t the only fresh produce surging in price, with green beans, zucchinis,

strawberries and broccoli the worst offenders.

Fruit and vegetable prices are likely to remain elevated due to the recent floods and poor growing conditions.

While the Frugl Grocery Price Index report showed prices had stabilised “to some degree” in the past quarter, prices were still well above levels seen in 2021.

The analysis showed that annual grocery price inflation continued to rise to a record level of 6.75 per cent, with quarterly results showing a continued increase in grocery price inflation at 1.05 per cent on the previous quarter.

“Grocery prices have actually held relatively steady compared to the previous quarter, however prices are still historically high compared to this time last year,” Frugl managing director and CEO Sean Smith said.

”Suppliers are forewarning that they will be increasing their prices so retailers will have no choice but to pass these onto consumers later in the year.”

Single professionals hit hardest by price rises

Feeding a family is very different to feeding yourself as a student, which is why Frugl has decided to measure grocery costs based on shopper personas.

Groceries have seen the highest increase for single professionals on both a quarterly and yearly basis.

Frugl personas
Source: Frugl

The cost of shopping as a single professional increased by 5.59 per cent in the past quarter, and 9.25 per cent over the past year.

Family shopping only got slightly more expensive in the past quarter - increasing by 0.51 per cent - but was still up 6.66 per cent in the 12 months to June.

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