Cost of living crisis: What do rising food prices mean for Londoners?

For the same goods that would have cost LondonWorld reporter Claudia Marquis £7.83 just over a year ago, have now totted up to a total of £8.45 - an increase of 62p, or 7.9%.

Food prices have risen by more than 5% in a year as the cost of living crisis puts pressure on Londoners’ wallets.

Soaring energy costs and bills are contributing to financial stress, while opposition politicians have called on the government to issue an emergency budget to tackle the issues.

As the Ukraine war, the impact of Brexit, and higher material and transport costs take effect, LondonWorld hit the shops to see how much Londoners can expect to pay for basic goods.

Food prices have risen by more than 5% in a year as the cost of living crisis puts pressure on Londoners’ wallets. Photo: LW

Video journalist Claudia Marquis headed to Battersea Park Sainsbury’s, in Wandsworth, on Thursday, April 28.

In her shopping basket were a litre of vegetable oil, six eggs, 500g of beef mince, a head of broccoli and a loaf of Hovis granary bread.

But for the same goods that would have cost her £7.83 just over a year ago, have now totted up to a total of £8.45 - an increase of 62p, or 7.9%.

Data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) shows food prices have risen by approximately 5.8% between March 2021 and March 2022.

Vegetable oil has gone up by 18.1% in a year. Photo: LW

The price of vegetable oil has risen by 18.1% on average in the last year, the ONS found.

While LondonWorld paid £1.23 for a litre of oil, which costed £1.45 a year ago. That’s an increase of 22p - or 17.83%.

Eggs have gone up by 8.6% on average, the ONS found, and LondonWorld paid £1.10 for a box of six free range eggs.

These were 9p - or 8.9% - cheaper a year ago, when customers would have paid £1.01.

Meat, eggs, bread and vegetable prices have all risen. Photo: LW

Meat prices have risen by an average of 5.6%, the ONS stats showed.

And LondonWorld paid £3.40 for 500g of beef mince, which would have cost £3.21 - 19p, or 5.9% cheaper - a year ago.

Prices for breads and cereals have also risen by 5.2% on average, according to ONS data.

A loaf of Hovis granary bread cost £1.15 - a 6p or 5.5% rise on the £1.09 it cost last year.

London mayor Sadiq Khan said action was needed quickly to tackle London’s air quality issues (Photo: Dominic Lipinski/WPA Pool/Getty Images)

Finally, vegetables, including potatoes, have gone up by 4.8% on average, the ONS found.

One head of broccoli was priced at £1.35 and would have cost £1.29 a year ago - a 6p and 4.6% price increase.

It comes as data analytics firm NielsenIQ coined the term “shelf shock” to describe the impact of continually rising prices on consumers.

While Brexit thinktank UK in a Changing Europe (UKICE) said trade barriers after Britain left the EU has pushed up the price of imported goods by 6%, adding to inflationary woes.

And consumer research firm Kantar found the average food bill will go up by £271 this year, thanks to supply chain issues, the Ukraine war and rising raw material costs.

Head of retail Fraser McKevitt told the BBC shoppers were switching to discount stores like Aldi and Lidl, adding: "The average household will now be exposed to a potential extra £271 per year.

"A lot of this is going on everyday essentials which will prove difficult to cut back on as budgets are squeezed.”

The mayor of London Sadiq Khan has launched an online cost of living hub, to help Londoners with bills, income and the mental health impact of spiralling costs.

Liberal Democrat leader Ed Davey stands in front of party members at Wandle Park on April 6. Photo: Getty

He said: “Rising food and energy prices are hitting Londoners hard.

“It cannot be right that millions are living in poverty and that so many people are struggling to get by each month.

“I’m doing all I can to support Londoners, but this is a national problem and the government needs to urgently step up and support people through this cost of living crisis.”

While Labour leader Keir Starmer said: “Labour have put forward sensible, costed, practical measures that would give immediate help to working people up and down the country.

There have been calls for Boris Johnson and Rishi Sunak to resign after being penalised for breaking the law (Credit: Getty Images)

“The government should hold an emergency budget to enact them, and address the yawning chasm left by the spring statement.

“People need solutions, not cynicism, and now is the time to act. Britain deserves better.”

And Lib Dem leader Ed Davey said: "These new inflation figures are frankly frightening.

“Every day the cost of living crisis worsens yet our leaders simply don’t seem to care.

“This country needs a new chancellor in place to deliver an emergency budget to protect households on the brink.

“It is now or never to save Britain from this cost of living crisis."

A government spokesperson said: “We understand that people are struggling with rising prices, and while we can’t shield everyone from the global challenges we face, we’re supporting British families to navigate the months ahead with a £22 billion package of support this financial year.

“That includes saving the typical employee over £330 a year by raising the National Insurance Contribution threshold, lowering the Universal Credit taper rate to help people keep more of the money they earn, and providing millions of households with up to £350 each to help with rising energy bills.”