New Zealand’s annual food price increase remains high at 6.4%

People shop at a supermarket in Wellington, New Zealand

Wellington, (Asian independent) New Zealand’s food prices were 6.4 per cent higher in April 2022 compared with April 2021, which was due to hikes across all the broad food categories measured, the country’s statistics department Stats NZ said.

“Inflation of food prices has generally been increasing since a low of 0.5 percent in the year to March 2021,” consumer prices manager Katrina Dewbery said in a statement.

This followed a period from October 2011 when food price annual inflation was mostly under 2.5 per cent, Dewbery said, adding ready-to-eat food and restaurant meals see the monthly rise, while fruit and vegetables drop, reports Xinhua news agency.

Monthly food prices were 0.1 per cent higher in April 2022 compared with March 2022. This was mainly due to a rise in prices for restaurant meals and ready-to-eat food, and a fall in prices for fruit and vegetables, she said.

The higher prices in restaurant meals and ready-to-eat food coincided with the minimum wage increase, Dewbery said, adding the food had the largest monthly increase in over a decade, up 1.4 percent.

This was mainly due to higher prices for dine-in lunches, hamburgers, and coffee.

“We often see price rises in restaurant meals and ready-to-eat food following an increase in the minimum wage,” she said.

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