Food inflation surged to reach record levels of 12.4% in November as high energy costs continued to impact the price of meat, eggs, dairy and other items, according to new research by the British Retail Consortium.
The food inflation rate jumped from 11.6% in October, also rising above the three-month average rate of 11.5%.
Fresh food inflation strongly accelerated in November to reach 14.3%, up from 13.3% in October, and rising above the three-month average rate of 13.1%.
Ambient food inflation accelerated to 10% last month, up from 9.4% in October, again above the three-month average rate of 9.2%, and representing the fastest rate of increase in the ambient food category on record.
Helen Dickinson OBE, chief executive of the British Retail Consortium, said: “Winter looks increasingly bleak as pressures on prices continue unabated. Food prices have continued to soar, especially for meat, eggs and dairy, which have been hit by rocketing energy costs, and rising costs of animal feed and transport. Coffee prices also shot up on last month as high input costs filtered through to price tags. Christmas gifting is also set to become more expensive than in previous years, with sports and recreation equipment seeing particularly high increases.
“While there are signs that cost pressures, and price rises, might start to ease in 2023, Christmas cheer will be dampened this year as households cut back on seasonal spending in order to prioritise the essentials.
“Retailers continue to do all they can to support their customers and ensure everyone can enjoy the festive season by fixing prices of many essentials, offering discounts to vulnerable groups, raising pay for their own people, and expanding their value ranges.”
Shop price annual inflation accelerated to 7.4% in November, up from 6.6% in October, marking another record for shop price inflation since the index started in 2005.