U.S. Food Prices on Rise


WASHINGTON — Food prices are expected to increase one per cent, compared to 0.8 per cent in 2010, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).

The new USDA outlook represents the sharpest acceleration in the U.S. food inflation rate from one year to the next since 1978, making it biggest increase since 2008, according to the Associated Press.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, retail grocery prices were 6.3 per cent higher in September than a year earlier, while the price of food eaten away from home was up 2.6 per cent.

The USDA predicts food inflation of 2.5 per cent to 3.5 per cent in 2012, barring any unexpected changes, such as poor harvests. A change of one percentage point in the rate is equal to about US$12 billion in annual spending.

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