Monday, August 27, 2018

Climate Change and the Price of Food

Meat, vegetable and dairy prices are set to rise "at least" 5% in the coming months because of the UK's extreme weather this year.  2018's big freeze and heatwave would end up costing consumers about £7 extra per month. 

It follows price warnings from farmers about peas, lettuces and potatoes. Wholesale prices of other vegetables have already soared by up to 80% since the start of the year. These increases can take up to 18 months to fully have an effect on shoppers. Shortages of vegetables also helped drive food price inflation to 1.6% in July - up from the 1.2% in May and June
  • Wholesale vegetable prices had jumped between March and July, with onion prices up 41%, carrots by 80%, and wheat for bread by a fifth
  • The farm gate price of butter has climbed 24% since March, as hot weather hampered grass growth for grazing.
  • Meat prices are set to rise due to a shortage of livestock feed.
These "wholesale price shocks" were likely to push up consumer costs by about £45m per week. That is equivalent to £1.79 per week per household.
Earlier this month, the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board warned that livestock and vegetable prices would be a "little bit higher right the way through until next spring" because of weather issues.

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