Food Prices Tracking: August Update

food price tracker

UK food price inflation hits double digits 

Increases in the overall UK inflation rate have exceeded economists’ predications, reaching double digits to 10.1% in the 12-months to July 2022, a new 40 year high. This months’ high inflation rate has primarily been driven by rising food prices, followed by fuel and transportation (ref). 

Prices of food and non-alcoholic beverages continue to rapidly increase, with inflation in this category reaching 12.7% in the past 12 months. This is a 2.3% increase from last month, which is the highest monthly increase in over 20 years. Prices in all food categories tracked by the ONS have risen over the last year, with the highest rise seen in oils and fat, milk cheese and egg and meats.  

Kantar estimates the average annual food shop is set to rise by £533 as prices for butter, milk and meat soar ref.  

As raw material prices continue to rise, exacerbated by the war on Ukraine, the UK has seen the highest increase in inflation among the G7 nations. One of the main contributors to this is our greater usage of gas, and as fuel prices soar, the energy companies are likely to pass on higher costs to their customers ref

The Bank of England forecasts the inflation rate will increase to 13% by the end of the year, as the UK heads for a recession (ref). Alternative forecasts by investment bank, Citi, suggest that inflation could rise even higher, hitting 18% in early 2023 as energy prices increase (ref). 


The Food Foundation basket  

The Food Foundation has been tracking the prices of two baskets of food items (for a typical man and a typical woman) since April 2022.  In this time the average cost of the woman’s basket has increased by 8.3% and the man’s by 9.9%. 

The poorest families will be hit the hardest by skyrocketing prices, and the government needs to do much more to support families through the winter and beyond. 

Indu Gurung
Senior Project Officer

Indu joined The Food Foundation in 2019 as part of the Rank Foundation’s Time to Shine scheme, moving into a Project Officer role in 2020. She works on the Peas Please and Plating up Progress projects. Prior to joining The Food Foundation, Indu completed a MSc in Public Health and a BSc in Human Nutrition. She is interested in reducing health inequalities, children’s health and wellbeing, and sustainable and nutritious food system/diets. Indu is also a lover of veg, having recently taken up urban gardening.

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Isabel Hughes
Policy Engagement Manager

Isabel joined The Food Foundation as Policy Engagement Manager in April 2020 from the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, where she worked on domestic and EU policy development. For the past 6 years she has worked in a variety of roles across Government, spanning EU policy implementation at the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, auditing the value for money of Cabinet Office programmes, and coordination of Defra’s no deal planning at the Department for Exiting the EU. She has also previously project managed large-scale digital campaigns at AgeUK.

Isabel is interested in the links between different parts of the food system, and the possibilities for really ambitious, joined-up policy thinking to address poor environmental, social, health and economic outcomes. Over the past 2 years she has completed a part-time MSc in Food Policy from City University, using her final thesis to analyse and critique the influencing strategies adopted by NGOs working on palm oil consumption in India. She is a professionally trained cook, and has recently discovered the joys of growing her own fruit and veg!

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