Bad news for humans in Canada in 2018: food is about to get more expensive.
According to the latest Food Price Report by researchers at Dalhousie University and the University of Guelph, everything from avocados to bread to dining at your local hot spot is going to cost a pretty bitcoin next year (not literally).
While this shouldn’t come as a surprise (food prices increase at close to the rate of inflation every year), a few food groups will see above-average escalations in price.
The most concerning for ‘Gram-or-it-didn’t-happen Millennials will be a four to six per cent increase in the price of eating out. This is considerably higher than the one to three per cent annual increase in the price of food usually seen at restaurants.
And that’s not the worst of it – there’s a real danger of being priced out of plants. The price of vegetables is also expected to see an increase between four and six per cent. Fruits, meanwhile, will be one to three per cent more expensive next year.
All other food categories – dairy, bakery, meats, seafood – will see their price mirror the inflation rate somewhere between zero and two per cent.
So, how will this look in your bank account? “Annual food expenditure for a family of 4 is expected to rise by $348 to a total of $11,948 in 2018,” reads the report. “The average family is expected to spend $208 more when eating out. We expect the average Canadian family to increase its food-away-from-home expenses by almost 8% in 2018.”
This is not an insignificant amount, either – “the average home is expected to spend almost 30% of its food budget in food service, the highest level in history.”
These forecasts are far from concrete, of course. Any number of disruptions could push prices up or down, as was the case this year.
“We believe major discounting and disruption within the Canadian food distribution landscape caused by the increasing pressures coming from Walmart, Costco and Amazon led to this major shift in the market,” reads the report in explaining how structural changes affected food prices in 2017.
Surely, receiving your chia seeds by drone will account for some abnormalities somewhere along the chain.