Brexit and war in Ukraine set to drive up UK food prices by 15% – IDG

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UK food prices are set to rise by 15% this summer and remain high for at least a year, a further blow to consumers already struggling with the cost of living crisis, according to a report on Thursday.

The Institute of Grocery Distribution said meat, grains, dairy products, fruits and vegetables would likely be hit the hardest, as Russia’s war in Ukraine pushes up the price of key foodstuffs.

Prices were also impacted by Brexit, production lockdowns in China and exports of key ingredients such as palm oil from Indonesia and corn from India.

The IDG has estimated that the average monthly grocery spend for a typical family of four will reach £439 in January next year, up from £396 in the same month in 2022.

Its report adds that Brexit and reliance on imports have left Britain’s food and consumer goods industry “only exposed to current pressures”.

British farmers are struggling to recruit workers to harvest food, as most were forced to leave when Britain left the European Union. This has led to the rotting of crops in the fields and the slaughter of animals, especially pigs, because there are not enough slaughterhouse workers.

“Based on our research, cost-of-living pressures are unlikely to ease soon. This will undoubtedly leave many households – and the businesses that serve them – looking to the future with considerable anxiety” , said IGD Chief Economist James Walton.

“If average food bills increase by 10.9% in a year, a family of four would need to find around £516 extra a year. We are already seeing households skipping meals, a clear indicator of food stress. »

“We expect buyers’ mood to remain gloomy for the foreseeable future as they are impacted by rising inflation and falling real wages. Buyers are likely to dial in as much as possible on bullying tactics. money saving.

Household budgets are increasingly under pressure, with energy and oil prices spiraling out of control amid the highest fiscal pressure in seven decades, already low wages falling in real terms at their fastest pace fast in 20 years and the standard of living at its lowest level since records began.

Last week the cost of filling an average family car topped £100 with no sign of government intervention on the horizon. Almost half the cost of a liter of fuel is a tax, including sales tax on government fees – effectively a tax on a tax.

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