Food prices rose 0.9 percent in the year to January, spurred by an 8.8 percent rise in the price of milk, 20 percent rise in butter prices, and a 4 percent increase for cheese, although dairy products saw price falls in the month of January.
Statistics New Zealand data released this morning shows food prices rose 1.2 percent last month, reflecting a 4.4 percent, seasonally induced increase in fresh produce prices, and offset by lower prices for milk, eggs and cheese.
Fruit prices in January rose 7.4 percent on December, driven largely by apples, strawberries, kiwifruit and mandarins. Vegetable prices rose 1.8 percent over the previous month.
Among grocery items, which were up 0.9 percent between December and January, contributors to the increase were a 1.5 percent rise in non-alcoholic beverage prices, a 0.8 percent increase in meat, poultry, and fish prices.
Restaurant and ready-to-eat food prices rose 0.1 percent in January and 1.7 percent over the previous 12 months, compared with 1.3 percent fall over 12 months in fresh produce prices, the only food sub-group to show a fall in the year to Jan 31.
Pumpkins, grapes, avocados, and pears showed the biggest falls.