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Food Price Increases Slow in February: CPI Report

Easing up a bit from January’s 0.5% increase, food prices rose 0.4% in February, according to the most recent Consumer Price Index report

Food at home

The food at home index rose 0.3% over the month, slightly less than the 0.4% increase in January. Prices went up in five of the six major grocery store food groups in February. Nonalcoholic beverages had the largest increase at 1.0%, after increasing just 0.4% in January. On the opposite end, prices for meats, poultry, fish, and eggs fell 0.1%, marking the index’s first decrease since December 2021.

Price changes for the other major grocery store groups included:

Cereals and bakery products: +0.3% (+1.0% in January)
Other food at home: +0.3% (+0.7% in January)
Fruits and vegetables: +0.2% (-0.5% in January)
Dairy and related products: +0.1% (unchanged in January)

The food at home index rose 10.2% over the last 12 months. Cereals and bakery products had the largest 12-month increase at 14.6%. Increases for the other groups ranged from 5.3% (fruits and vegetables) to 12.4% (other food at home).

Food away from home

The food away from home index increased 0.6% in February, following the same increase in January. The index for limited service meals increased 0.7%, also showing the same increase as January, and the index for full service meals rose 0.6% after increasing 0.5% in January.

The index for food away from home rose 8.4% over the last year. The index for full service meals jumped 8.0% during the 12-month period, and the index for limited service meals increased 7.2%.

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