Milk, cheese, bakery items, water and savoury pies all saw higher-than-average price increases in the 12 months to December. Across all retailers inflation for food and drink stood at 15% last month.
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Grocery staples - including butter, milk and cheese - up to 30% more expensive than a year ago

The price of grocery staples – including butter, milk and cheese – has risen by up to 30% in the last year, according to a new Which? inflation tracker.

The consumer champion has been recording the annual inflation of tens of thousands of food and drink products across three months at the eight major supermarkets.

It also found trust in the sector is plummeting amid the cost of living crisis.

In December, food and drink inflation was at 15% overall across the retailers – but butter and spreads were up almost double, at 29.4%.

Milk (26.3%), cheese (22.3%), bakery items (19.5%), water (18.6%), and savoury pies, pastries, and quiches (18.5%) also saw higher-than-average price increases.

Which? looked at the some of worst examples in these categories for the three months to the end of December 2022.

It found Utterly Butterly (500g) saw dramatic price rises at several supermarkets including Waitrose where it went from £1 to £1.95 (95%).

Waitrose Duchy Organic Homogenised Semi-Skimmed Milk (one pint) went from 65p to £1.22 (87.1%) – and at Tesco, Creamfields French Brie 200g went from 79p to £1.43 (81.5%).

The worst individual price hike on a food item across all the supermarkets was Quaker Oat So Simple Simply Apple (8x33g) at Asda which went from £1 on average in December 2021 to an average £2.88 in December 2022 – a sharp increase of 188%.

Tesco said: “With household budgets under increasing pressure we are absolutely committed to helping our customers, by keeping a laser focus on the cost of the weekly shop. Earlier this week, we were pleased to be recognised by The Grocer as the retailer doing the most to keep prices down right now.

“So whether it’s price matching Aldi on the basics, locking the price of more than a thousand household staples until Easter 2023, or offering exclusive deals and rewards through thousands of Clubcard Prices – we’re more committed than ever to providing our customers with great value.”

A spokesperson for Asda added: “We’re focused on keeping prices on branded and own-label products in check to ensure that Asda remains the lowest-priced traditional supermarket as shown by independent research carried out by Which? Magazine.”

Waitrose has been approached for comment.

Organic dairy farmers are in crisis due to drought, market consolidation, and skyrocketing energy and feed costs brought on by unstable global markets and inflation.

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