food grocery inflation canada

Inflation is getting worse in Canada again and these food items are going up the most

Consumers have been dealing with record inflation for so long that we should perhaps be used to it by now, but empty bank accounts and maxed credit cards keep serving as painful reminders that the price for basic goods and services, especially in Toronto, is ludicrously high.

While prices for many things are still on the up, they have been rising at a slower pace so far this year, at least — that is, until last month.

According to the latest Consumer Price Index (CPI) released by Statistics Canada on Tuesday, April marked the first month that the rate of inflation for certain goods has surged higher from one month to the next since June of 2022. 

The index — that is, the change in overall pricing of these items in Canada — jumped from 4.3 per cent in March 2023 (measured against March 2022) to 4.4 per cent in April 2023 (also versus the same month the year prior), which was more than anticipated.

This is largely because of higher rent prices, mortgage interest rates and gas prices, the report notes, but there are a few other basic necessities that also contributed to this spike.

Though grocery prices in general increased at a slower rate in April than in March — 9.1 per cent higher than April 2022 as opposed to 9.7 per cent than March 2022 — the cost of some products is climbing at a quicker pace than others.

"Price increases for fresh vegetables slowed year over year in April (+8.8 per cent) compared with March (+10.8 per cent), mainly driven by lower prices for lettuce (-3.3 per cent), which have fallen from record price levels in December 2022," reads the release. "Similarly, coffee and tea prices increased 6.4 per cent on a year-over-year basis in April 2023 compared with 11.1 per cent in March."

On the flip side, we have fresh fruit, which got more expensive, faster last month, jumping 8.3 per cent year-over-year after going up 7.1 per cent year-over-year in March.

And one fruit in particular has become strikingly more expensive: oranges, which are leading the pack with a price point that was 12 per cent higher this April than last April.

Interestingly, the index only accelerated in six provinces, with Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba hit hardest by price hikes, largely because of higher electricity costs. Meanwhile, the CPI in Ontario was actually 0.1 per cent lower in April than in March.

Alas, bills at the supermarket are only slated to get even more unreasonable over the course of this year after food inflation hit a 41-year high in 2022.

Lead photo by

Hanson Lu

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