The prices of food rose at the fastest rate in more than 45 years in the 12 months to March 2023.
According to new data from the Office of National Statistics (ONS), the annual inflation rate in this category was 19.2%, up from 18.2% in the year to February 2023.
The largest contributor to the rise in food inflation was bread and cereals, for which average prices rose by 19.4% in the year to March 2023.
Prices are also rising in restaurants and cafés, where the annual inflation rate was 10.4% in the year to March 2023, although that was down slightly from 11.4% in February 2023.
As the cost of food continues to rise, half of adults in Great Britain are buying less food when food shopping, according to the ONS’s latest social trends survey.
When asked between 22 March and 2 April 2023, 51% of adults reported buying less food in the previous two weeks.
The survey also reveals around one in four adults (26%) experienced shortages of essential food items in the past two weeks.
This was similar to 27% in the previous period (22 February to 5 March 2023) but well above the 16% recorded during a similar period a year earlier (3 to 13 March 2022).
When asked what actions they were taking to save money on food, over half of adults said they were buying cheaper food (53%), around one in four were buying more tinned or longer shelf-life food (26%), and around one in five were eating food past its use-by date (21%).