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Food Prices Rise 0.6 Percent

13 August 2002

Food Prices Rise 0.6 Percent

Food prices rose 0.6 percent in July 2002, according to latest figures released by Statistics New Zealand. Price increases were recorded for fruit and vegetables; meat, fish and poultry; and restaurant meals and ready-to-eat food.

Fruit and vegetable prices rose by 4.6 percent in July 2002, making the most significant upward contribution to the overall change in food prices. This increase follows a decrease in June of 1.2 percent. After adjusting for normal seasonal change, significant upward contributions in July 2002 came from higher prices for tomatoes (up 54.8 percent) and potatoes (up 13.0 percent). The most significant downward contribution came from avocados (down 33.6 percent).

Meat, fish and poultry prices rose 0.3 percent in July. Upward contributions came from poultry (up 5.3 percent) and lamb (up 1.0 percent). Restaurant meals and ready-to-eat food prices rose 0.2 percent in July 2002, following an increase of 0.2 percent in June 2002. The increase in this subgroup in July 2002 was driven by higher prices for ready-to-eat food (up 0.2 percent).

Grocery food, soft drinks and confectionery prices showed no change in July 2002. The most significant upward contribution to the grocery food subgroup in July came from an increase in prices for fruit juice (up 12.9 percent). Bread and bread rolls made the most significant downward contribution (down 1.9 percent), followed by frozen and chilled meat pies (down 10.4 percent) and eggs (down 6.9 percent).

From July 2001 to July 2002, food prices rose 3.3 percent. Grocery food, soft drinks and confectionery prices rose 3.2 percent in the year to July 2002, and restaurant meals and ready-to-eat food rose 4.0 percent over the same period. Meat, fish and poultry prices rose 5.1 percent, while fruit and vegetable prices rose 0.7 percent.

Brian Pink
Government Statistician

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