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Fruit and Vegetables Push Food Prices Up

Food Price Index: May 2005

Fruit and Vegetables Push Food Prices Up

Food prices increased 0.5 percent in May 2005, according to the latest figures released by Statistics New Zealand. Prices increased for fruit and vegetables; grocery food, soft drinks and confectionery; and restaurant meals and ready-to-eat food.

Fruit and vegetable prices rose 4.6 percent in May 2005, strongly influenced by increases in prices for fresh vegetables (up 6.4 percent). The most significant price increases were for tomatoes (up 15.0 percent), potatoes (up 11.2 percent) and lettuce (up 39.1 percent).

In May 2005, prices increased for grocery food, soft drinks and confectionery (up 0.2 percent), and for restaurant meals and ready-to-eat food (up 0.1 percent). Within grocery food, soft drinks and confectionery, the most significant upward contributions came from instant coffee (up 9.3 percent) and instant noodles (up 8.2 percent). These were partly offset by lower prices for fruit juice (down 11.3 percent), and frozen and chilled meat pies (down 11.4 percent).

Prices for the meat, fish and poultry subgroup, however, decreased 0.4 percent, with lower prices recorded for poultry (down 4.9 percent) and beef mince (down 2.9 percent).

From May 2004 to May 2005, food prices increased 1.4 percent. Price increases were recorded for restaurant meals and ready-to-eat food (up 2.4 percent); grocery food, soft drinks and confectionery (up 1.1 percent); meat, fish and poultry (up 1.8 percent); and fruit and vegetables (up 0.3 percent).

Ian Ewing

Acting Government Statistician

END

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