While Canada’s headline inflation rate has continued to drop, the food inflation rate has shown no signs of slowing down.
Numbers from Statistics Canada’s latest inflation report showed that in January, food prices saw a year-over-year increase of 11.4 per cent, up from 11 per cent the previous month. Since last August, the food inflation rate has been above 10 per cent.
The price of lettuce increased faster than any other food item over the course of a year, jumping 35.3 per cent. Last fall, Canada saw widespread lettuce shortages, causing some restaurants to remove leafy greens from their menus. Yet, lettuce prices are still more affordable compared to last month, as they’re down 5.8 per cent since December.
Meanwhile, fresh vegetables as a whole are up 14.7 per cent year-over-year and 3.8 per cent since last month. Tomatoes, in particular, jumped in price nine per cent over a month.
The price of chicken increased faster than almost every other grocery item over the course of a month. Meat prices as a whole jumped 3.4 per cent from December to January, but prices for fresh and frozen chicken increased nine per cent during this timeframe. Statistics Canada cites stronger seasonal demand as well as supply constraints relating to avian flu.
Flour is also up eight per cent from last month and 23.2 per cent from last year. Prices for edible fats and oils and flour have also increased 23.2 per cent and 22.3 per cent, respectively, although these prices haven’t seen significant change since last month.
Butter is also up 19.1 per cent year-over-year and seven per cent from last month, while prices for bread, rolls and buns increased 18.1 per cent from last year.