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Food Prices Rise In April

Food Price Index: April 2001

Food prices rose 0.4 per cent in April, driven by rises in prices for tomatoes, and fresh and frozen poultry, according to Statistics New Zealand. Food prices are now 6.0 per cent higher than in April 2000. This latest annual increase is the highest since an equivalent rise in July 1990.

On an annual basis, all of the commodity groups which are measured in the Food Price Index showed increases for the year ending April 2001. The largest rise came from fruit and vegetable prices (up 18.3 per cent) and the smallest from grocery food, soft drinks and confectionery prices (up 2.5 per cent).

In the month of April, meat, fish and poultry (which rose by 1.3 per cent) made the most significant contribution to the overall rise in food prices. This was mainly driven by a 5.5 per cent rise in the price of fresh and frozen poultry.

Fruit and vegetable prices rose by 0.6 per cent in April 2001, after falling 3.9 per cent in March. Fresh vegetables made the only upward contribution to this subgroup, rising 2.7 per cent. After adjusting for normal seasonal change for fresh produce, the most significant price rises came from tomatoes (up 20.1 per cent) and kiwifruit (up 39.5 per cent). Fresh fruit prices fell by 0.4 per cent (after falling 9.2 per cent in March) driven down by lower prices for bananas and apples.

The grocery food, soft drinks and confectionery subgroup recorded no change in April 2001. More items came off special than went on special. The most significant price rises came from fruit juice and coffee, while the most significant price fall came from potato crisps.

Ian Ewing DEPUTY GOVERNMENT STATISTICIAN

END




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