Kiwifruit prices reached an all-time high in December 2019, with prices for seasonal fruit and vegetables also up, Stats NZ say.
“Kiwifruit prices rose 32 per cent in December to a weighted average price of $8.27 per kilo, an all-time high,” acting consumer prices manager James Griffin says.
“This compares with $4.24 in December 2018.”
The price rises for kiwifruit contributed to a 2.1 per cent increase in overall fruit and vegetable prices in December.
Seasonal fruit and vegetables, in particular potatoes, apples, and onions, were the main contributors to the rise in fruit and vegetable prices between November and December, Stats NZ say.
Potatoes weighted average price per kilo in December 2019 is $2.13 up 18 per cent, apples were $3.80 per kilo, up 16 per cent and onions were $2.38 per kilo, up 8.9 per cent.
Price rises for potatoes, apples, and onions are typical in December, Stats NZ say.
“These were partly offset by nectarine price, down 24 per cent, and lettuce prices down 18 per cent.
“Offsetting fruit and vegetable prices, grocery food prices were down one per cent in December 2019.
Potato crisps were down 4.8 per cent, and chocolate biscuits, down 6.5 per cent, were the main drivers of this fall, Stats NZ say.
“The fall in grocery food prices contributed to overall food prices decreasing 0.2 per cent in December.”
Prices for ready-to-eat foods were up 3.3 per cent for the year ended December 2019, influenced by burgers and fried fish.
“This contributed to a 2.4 per cent rise in overall food prices for the year,” Stats NZ say.
In April 2019, the minimum wage rose from $16.50 to $17.70 an hour.
“Changes to the minimum wage tend to impact more on workers in the retail and food industries.”
“Meat, poultry, and fish prices were also up 4.2 per cent for the year, mainly driven by preserved, prepared, and processed meats, in particular bacon, ham, and sausages.”
Bacon’s weighted average price in December 2019 was $13.15 per 700 grams, up 20 per cent for the year, ham was $13.97 per kilo, up 14 per cent for the year, and sausages were $10.72 per kilo, up 4.9 per cent for the year.
“Price rises for preserved, prepared, and processed meats were offset by prices for chicken pieces, which were down 9.0 per cent for the year,” James says.