A new report says food prices will be going up in Canada next year.
The 2021 Food Price Report says rising bread, meat and vegetable prices are all expected to push grocery bills up to five per cent higher.
That means an average Canadian family of four that includes will pay as much as $695 more on food next year, for a total grocery bill of nearly $14,000 for the year.
In dollars, that is the highest predicted increase by Canada’s Food Price Report. The food inflation rate in 2021 is likely to outpace the general inflation rate.
Sylvain Charlebois, a Dalhousie University professor and lead author of the report, says Canadians won’t see a break at the grocery store any time soon.
He says researchers are forecasting the highest increase since the annual report’s inception 11 years ago.
The report by four Canadian universities says the pandemic, wildfires and changing consumer habits are all to blame for increasing food prices.
Researchers found that meat prices could increase as much as six-and-a-half per cent, with poultry leading the way.
Also, wildfires in California will mean paying more for produce while higher wheat costs are pushing up prices in the bread aisle.
Last year’s report predicted the average Canadian family would spend up to $12,667 on food in 2020. The report says based on the 2020 inflation rate to date, this figure is likely to be closer to $12,508, largely because consumers ate at restaurants less frequently.
As per the report, 2019 forecasts were accurate except for bakery, dairy and meat, but the report missed the mark for these categories by no more than 0.2%. Price increase predictions for these categories were lower than what was observed.
— With Files From The Canadian Press