Spending pressure continues to impact fresh produce

Latest figures on the economy have highlighted the continuing pressure on household spending on fresh produce, with rising prices due to last year's poor weather and static incomes.

The latest Consumer Prices Index showed that, along with cereals and domestic fuel, vegetables were the category showing the highest price inflation, rising 8.1 per cent over the past 12 months.

The price of carrots has been reported as having increased by 44 per cent over the period, with potatoes up 43 per cent and Brussels sprouts up 24 per cent.

Fruit was in line with the food average, at 3.9 per cent. This was itself ahead of the overall figure for goods and services, which was held down by a dip in vehicle fuel prices and mortgage rates.

Meanwhile, last month's Asda Income Tracker, compiled by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR), found that families had £12 less disposable income in real terms in November than in the same month two years ago.

Inflation is expected to be sustained by further food and utility price increases in the year ahead, the report added.

CEBR economist Rob Harbron said: "Price inflation on essential items is likely to be elevated in 2013 while weak economic conditions will hold back wage increases. Robust growth in family spending power is expected to remain elusive."

The Office for Budget Responsibility has predicted economic growth of 1.2 per cent in 2013, well below the long-term average.


Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus

Read These Next

What does the 25-year plan mean for growers?

What does the 25-year plan mean for growers?

Published on 11 January, the Government's long-awaited 'A Green Future: Our 25 Year Plan to Improve the Environment' brings together a number of policy strands into a single framework that will impact many sectors, not least fresh produce, over the coming decades.

What will 'embracing change' mean for horticulture?

What will 'embracing change' mean for horticulture?

At the Oxford Farming Conference, whose theme was "embracing change", Defra secretary Michael Gove expanded on what a post-Brexit UK agriculture and land-use policy will look like and how it will impact farmers and growers.

Can growers see off the looming labour crisis by boosting efficiency?

Can growers see off the looming labour crisis by boosting efficiency?

Concern over the availability of seasonal labour to the fresh-produce industry has never been greater.