Food prices rose 0.3% in August 2021 compared with the previous month, mainly influenced by higher prices for meat, poultry, and fish, Statistics New Zealand (Stats NZ) have announced.
They say the rise is mainly influenced by higher prices for fruit and vegetables and grocery foods.
“Fruit and vegetable prices generally rise in winter as lots of summer produce is out of season and becomes more expensive,” says consume prices manager Katrina Dewbery.
The rise in fruit and vegetable prices was mainly influenced by higher prices for tomatoes (up 21%), broccoli (up 39%), and strawberries (up 34%).
The weighted average price of a 350g broccoli head was $4.13 in July, an all-time high, and $0.43 more expensive than the previous high in May 2017.
Fruit and vegetable prices rose 5.1% in July 2021, but only up 0.8% after adjusting for seasonality effects.
“Fruit and vegetables often go in and out of season with large fluctuations in prices, however we can use the seasonally adjusted index to get a better understanding of what the price movement would be without the normal seasonal effects,” Dewbery says.
Milk prices (standard homogenised) rose 3.3% in July to an all-time high weighted average of $3.78 per two litre bottle, following rising global dairy trade prices between December 2020 and March 2021.
“We often see a lag before consumer dairy prices in New Zealand are affected by the global prices,” Dewbery says.