The BRC–Nielsen Shop Price Index for May 2019 has shown that food inflation continued to decelerate in May to 1.8%, down from 2.2% in April.
Broken down, fresh food inflation was steady at 1.5% in May while ambient food inflation slowed to 2.1%, down from April’s 3.2%.
Helen Dickinson, Chief Executive of British Retail Consortium, commented: “Food inflation continued to slow, though it remains above the 12-month average. Rising costs associated with currency depreciation, stockpiling, rising minimum wage and the apprenticeship levy, have all put upwards pressure on prices for a while, and it now appears that retailers cannot absorb them any longer. Therefore, if the Government does not address future cost rises, including spiralling business rates, we may see larger price rises in the future.”
Mike Watkins, Head of Retailer and Business Insight at Nielsen, added: “Whilst there are still cost price increases coming through the supply chain, food inflation remains lower than CPI and supermarkets continue to offer price reductions, in particular on seasonal food and drink, which is helping to offset other cost of living increases.”