Revealed: The 10 food items from your weekly shop increasing fastest in price

Amid a growing cost of living crisis in the UK, shoppers are feeling the pinch.

The UK's annual rate of inflation rose by 5.5% in the 12 months up to January, Office for National Statistics (ONS) figures revealed this week.

This is the highest since March 1992, and has been largely driven by increases in energy prices – with bills set to rise again from April after Ofgem raised the price cap earlier this month.

Higher food prices are also driving the rise, with food inflation up 4.3% in the 12 months to January.

Why the cost of living is increasing. (Yahoo News UK)
Why the cost of living is increasing. (Yahoo News UK)

This is happening while wages are rising slower than inflation – which the Bank of England has warned will rocket to 7.25% by April – the highest level since August 1991.

All this essentially means less money in people's bank accounts.

Which food items are going up in price the most?

A number of food staples have seen steep price rise over the past year.

Cooking ingredients have been subject to the highest spikes, with margarine and vegetable fats up a massive 37.2%.

Food staples increasing in price. (Yahoo News UK)
Food staples increasing in price. (Yahoo News UK)

Pasta and couscous also rose by nearly 15%, while condiments including jam, marmalade and honey increased 13.6%.

This comes after Tesco chair John Allan warned earlier this month that the worst of rising food prices is “yet to come”.

He told the BBC: “Food is a relatively small part of household spending, it’s only about 9%, [and] that figure has halved in the last half century.

“But of course, it’s a bigger proportion for those on the lowest incomes. So I think we’re concerned particularly about what can we do to try to protect those who are hardest up, who are going to suffer most from that?

“And in some ways, the worst is still to come because although food price inflation in Tesco over the last quarter was only 1%, we are impacted by rising energy prices, our suppliers are impacted by rising energy prices."

He said food prices at his chain could rise 5% in the coming months.

Meanwhile, the ONS found a small number of food items decreased in price in the 12 months to January. These included chocolate (-0.4%), fresh or chilled fish (-0.9%) and flours and other cereals (-9.3%).

Why is everything getting more expensive?

The coronavirus pandemic has hit global supply chains with a combination of pent-up demand and delays to shipping as factories across the world face lockdowns and worker absences.

This has led to prices rising, particularly for raw materials.

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Food prices have also risen as wages increase, including for HGV drivers due to recent shortages and with thousands of drivers leaving the UK to return to their home countries in the EU.

But the biggest driver of inflation is eye-watering energy tariff rises after wholesale gas prices shot up by about 500% in 2021, as well as record costs at the petrol pumps from hikes in oil prices globally.

Ofgem recently announced it will increase the energy price cap by 54% in April, adding nearly £700 to annual gas and electricity bills, with a further increase expected when it is next reviewed in October.