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Report: Overall Food Prices Remain Steady, But Food at Home Index Falls

In News, Trends by Amelie Welden0 Comments

In September, consumer prices for food were unchanged overall for the third month in a row, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U).

Prices for food at home, however, continued to decline, while prices for food away from home maintained their upward trend.

Prices for food at home continued to decline, but at a slightly lower rate.

Even while the overall food index remained unchanged, the food at home index fell 0.1% in September, compared to decreases of 0.2% to 0.5% in the previous four months. The index for food away from home was up 0.2%, the same rate as last month and several months before.

Of the six major grocery store food group indexes, half declined and half increased.

  • Nonalcoholic beverages fell 0.4%.
  • Fruits and vegetables fell 0.3%.
  • Meats, poultry, fish, and eggs fell 0.2%.
  • There was a 0.1% rise for cereals and bakery products, dairy and related products, and other food at home.

Overall food prices fell over the last year, with food at home seeing a substantial decline.

Over the last 12 months, the overall food index has declined by 0.3%.

  • The food at home index has fallen by 2.2% over the past 12 months, the largest annual decline since December 2009.
  • The food away from home index has gone up 2.4% since September 2015.

The food at home figure includes the following year-over-year trends, with all sectors showing a decline:

  • Meats, poultry, fish, and eggs: -6.3%
  • Dairy and related products: -2.5%
  • Nonalcoholic beverages: -0.9%
  • Fruits and vegetables: -0.7%.
  • Other food at home: -0.6%
  • Cereals and bakery products: -0.5%

Alcohol prices were up for September, and also up over the last year.

The alcoholic beverages index—which is not included in the overall food index—rose by 0.3% in September.

  • The indexes for alcoholic beverages at home and away from home each rose by 0.3%.

Over the past 12 months, the alcoholic beverage index has risen by 1.4%.

  • The alcoholic beverages at home index has increased by 1.0%.
  • The alcoholic beverages away from home index has increased by 2.0%.

 

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