Food prices expected to rise around $500 a year in 2020

WEST CARLETON – Families can expect to pay around $500 a year more in groceries in 2020 the Canadian Food Price reports.

In 2020 it’s expected the average Canadian family will pay almost $500 more for groceries ($487).

The Renfrew County and District Health Unit says food insecurity is a serious problem and upwards of one in 10 households (12 per cent) worry about not having enough food to eat. In 2018 the cost of feeding a family of four in Renfrew County was $866 a month.  This doesn’t include processed food, special dietary food, infant food or cleaning and personal products. 

The local health unit says it’s unlikely low income household can afford the cost of living and a nutritious diet. Before factoring in the increase in food costs, a family of four earning minimum wage that pays $1,000 a month for rent, would have about $1,750 left for heat, hydro, Internet, insurance, transportation, child care, school essentials, clothing, medical and dental. In another scenario a single male receiving Ontario Works assistance after being unable to find work would not have enough money to pay for rent and food. 

The Canadian Food Price report says meat will go up four to six per cent, vegetables could go up two to four per cent, fruits will see a 1.5 to 3.5 per cent increase, dairy items are expected to go up one to three per cent and baked goods will be two per cent more. Climate change, geopolitical conflicts and single use plastic packaging are being blamed for the higher cost of food.