Prices of pasta, tea, chips and cooking oil soar

Published on
October 25, 2022

Source: BBC

The price of pasta, tea, chips and cooking oil has soared, according to new data, with vegetable oil going up by 65% in a year.

Overall, the price of budget food in supermarkets rose by 17% in the year to September, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said.

It comes as a separate ONS report sheds light on the cost of living crisis.

Almost half of adults who pay energy bills and 30% paying rent or mortgages say these are difficult to afford.

Inflation - the rate at which prices are rising - is at a 40-year high.

Food prices drove the latest rise in living costs in September, along with energy bills and transport costs.

Earlier this year, anti-poverty campaigner Jack Monroe criticised the way that the rate of inflation was calculated stating that it "grossly" underestimates "the true cost of living crisis".

The official inflation data measures the prices of 700 goods, but since May this year the ONS has started releasing a new data set, which measures the change in price of 30 everyday grocery items across seven supermarkets.

This is the second time it has released this data.

It found sharp increases in the price of some household staples in supermarkets. Pasta prices rose by 60% in the year to September 2022, while tea prices went up by almost 50%.

Other everyday items such as chips, bread, biscuits and milk also recorded large increases.

But some other items fell in price during the period, including orange juice and beef mince.

The rise in the cost of groceries has been accelerated by the war in Ukraine, which has disrupted grain, oil and fertiliser supplies from the region.

"What we are seeing is that the price of low-cost goods is going up at the same rate as food across the piece with some real highlights... cooking oil and pasta, I would add tea, chips and bread to that - really going up and very, very few things going down at all," the chief executive of the UK Statistics Authority, Prof Sir Ian Diamond, told the BBC.

"We are really seeing that the squeeze on people who buy the lowest cost things is pretty hard at the moment."

When asked whether things are getting worse, he said: "I think things are tight. I think we are not seeing much of a getting worse at all but we are seeing things remaining really tight."

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