Fast Facts

Butter at record $5.67 a block

Rising dairy prices have pushed food prices up 2.7 percent in the year to October 2017, Stats NZ said. This followed a 3.0 percent increase in the year to September 2017.

Butter prices led the way again – up 62 percent from the same time in 2016. Milk and cheese prices also increased (up 7.5 and 12 percent respectively) and had large contributions to the increase in food prices seen in the year to October 2017.

“Dairy products are very widely used inputs in a number of food items,” consumers price index manager Matthew Haigh said. “The effects of price rises flow on to products such as takeaway biscuits, buns, cakes and coffee, and eating out for lunch and dinner, all of which saw increases in the year to October 2017.”

Butter prices continued to climb to another record high in October 2017. The average price of the cheapest available 500g block of butter was $5.67 in October 2017, compared with $5.55 in September 2017 and $3.50 in October 2016.

High vegetable prices for this time of the year

Monthly food prices fell 1.1 percent in October 2017, with tomato, lettuce, cucumber, and capsicum prices showing large seasonal falls. Tomato prices were down to $7.68 a kilo, compared with $10.02 in September 2017, however, prices remained considerably higher than the $6.83 per kilo in October 2016.

Fruit and vegetable prices fell 6.8 percent in October 2017, making it the largest contributor to the monthly decrease. After seasonal adjustment, however, fruit and vegetable prices fell 1.3 percent.

“Although fruit and vegetable prices have dropped in October 2017, the impact of bad weather earlier in 2017 continues to cause higher prices compared with this time in 2016,” Mr Haigh said. “Kumara, pumpkin, and avocados have seen the largest increases since October 2016.”

Luncheon sausage is out, olives are in

We introduced new items to our basket of food items in October 2017. We’ve also adjusted their relative importance so that we continue to reflect New Zealanders’ evolving purchasing habits.

Source: Stats NZ

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