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Food inflation varies, depending on what you eat

Food inflation varies, depending on what you eat

Posted on: 1/21/2019 | Author: ATB Financial's Economics + Research Team

Last week, The Owl took a peek at how consumer price inflation pushed prices for goods and services in Alberta up 2.1 per cent in December compared to a year earlier. Today, we examine the overall food bill.

Food purchased in Alberta stores and restaurants is up 2.4 per cent. The chart below describes the price movements for four major food purchases: fresh vegetables, fresh fruit, meat, and food purchased in restaurants. The graph shows the last five years of data, with each month representing the average annual inflation over the previous twelve months. This helps smooth the data to give a better visual representation of price movements.

After a roller coaster ride over the last few years, fresh vegetable prices (in yellow) have settled down to an annual increase of around six per cent. Fresh fruit prices (in blue) are currently rising more slowly at about two per cent. Overall meat prices (in red) have actually been falling for the last two years. Food purchased in restaurants (in purple) has been remarkably consistent in price inflation, rising very close to three per cent annually over the last five years.

Food inflation in Alberta, graph

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