Witness Reporter
2 minute read
30 Jul 2022

Average household food basket prices in SA are ‘stabilising’

Witness Reporter

“Indications are that global commodity prices of grains and oilseeds and crude oil, among others, are stabilising."

Although the average household food basket continues to rise, the data over the past three months is starting to show a moderation in prices.

This is according to the latest findings released by the Pietermaritzburg Economic Justice & Dignity Group which tracks down food prices.

In a press statement released on Friday, the group said in July, although still rising (up by 1,3%), the higher increase on the average household food basket is driven by a spike in the Cape Town Basket (up by R157,41).

ALSO READ | Average cost of household food basket in KZN increases

This spike has driven up the monthly increase on the average household food basket by about R20.

“Indications are that global commodity prices of grains and oilseeds and crude oil, among others, are stabilising.

“This means that imported inflation is likely to be lower, and we should begin to see some of this filtering through. We are further likely to see lower fuel prices next month. However, while we may start to see food prices stabilising, it is not clear when these prices will begin to fall,” said the group.

It added that any moderation of food prices will not mean that there will be more money in people’s pockets because July and August bring with them increases in taxi fares and higher electricity tariff prices.

Pressures will therefore remain on households’ ability to afford their basic expenditures for the foreseeable future.

ALSO READ | Basic foods basket costs R161 more

In July the average cost of the household food basket is R4 748,87.

Month-on-month the average cost of the basket increased by R60,06 (1,3%), from R4 688,81 in June 2022 to R4 748,87 in July 2022.

It said the Pietermaritzburg basket decreased by R37,58 (-0,8%) month on month, and increased by R600,27 (15,1%) year on year, to R4 564,94 in July 2022.

Generally, the trend is that the major staple foods- maize meal, rice, samp, flour, sugar and potatoes saw increases. Cooking oil prices are stabilising in all areas except Johannesburg, which saw a further 5% increase.

July saw higher prices on vegetables: tomatoes, carrots, butternut, spinach, and green pepper; except for cabbage prices which decreased.

Bananas, apples were up and oranges came down. Bread prices were down except for a steep jump of 5% in Cape Town, said the group.

ALSO READ | Household food basket increased in all areas tracked

It added all meat prices came down, except beef which increased marginally (by 1%), frozen chicken portions increased marginally in all areas, except Durban and Springbok, where they came down by 6% and pushed the average down to -2%; and fish, which increased by 7%.