New Zealand food inflation highest in 13 years

New Zealand is facing the largest annual spike in food prices in 13 years. According to new figures from Stats NZ, food prices had grown by 8.3% in August. This is the largest annual increase since the global financial crisis in July 2009, when food prices jumped up by 8.4%.

Fruit and vegetables – particularly capsicums, potatoes, and onions – had jumped up 15% in the past year and were also the largest contributor to the monthly rise, influenced by higher prices for tomatoes, capsicums, and cabbage. Over the 13 years, tomatoes had increased by 162.2% – the biggest overall price jump.

Inflation – driven by many factors, including the monetary response to Covid-19, global supply-chain issues, and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine – has sparked a cost of living crisis in New Zealand and is adding to the already high food prices.

New Zealand shoppers face some of the most expensive groceries in the OECD. In July 2021, a commerce commission investigation into New Zealand’s supermarket duopoly found the grocers were making huge profits and charging some of the highest prices in the OECD.


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