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Inflation may be slowing, but here's how much food prices went up in May

People shop for vegetables at a market in Nanning, capital of south China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, July 9, 2022. China's consumer price index CPI, a main gauge of inflation, rose 2.5 percent year on year in June, according to data released by the National Bureau of Statistics NBS on Saturday. (Photo by Lu Boan/Xinhua via Getty Images)
Food prices have remained stubbornly high in Canada. (Photo by Lu Boan/Xinhua via Getty Images) (Xinhua News Agency via Getty Images)

Canadians may have seen some inflation relief in May as the headline figure slowed to 3.4 per cent, but the same cannot be said for grocery prices.

Food prices have remained stubbornly high in Canada. The price of food purchased from restaurants jumped 6.8 per cent in May on an annual basis, while grocery store prices increased 9 per cent year-over-year. On a monthly basis, food prices increased 0.8 per cent, or a seasonally adjusted 0.5 per cent.

"Food inflation continues to bite... keeping the yearly rate at 8.3 per cent year-over-year, despite the slowing on the producer front," BMO macro strategist Benjamin Reitzes wrote in a research note on Tuesday.

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"There's likely some softening ahead for food inflation, but this will likely remain a sore spot for consumers for some time."

The data release came on the same day that Canada's Competition Bureau published its retail grocery market study that concluded the country needs more grocery competition.

"Canada needs solutions to help bring grocery prices in check," the study said.

"More competition is a key part of the answer."

Here's a breakdown of the year-over-year price increases in May for food from Canadian grocery stores. The figures in brackets are the year-over-year price increases recorded in April.

Meat: +6.3 per cent (+6.7 per cent)

Dairy products: +7.5 per cent (+6.8 per cent)

Cheese: +6.0 per cent (+4.6 per cent)

Eggs: +8.2 per cent (+8.6 per cent)

Fresh milk: +6.6 per cent (+6.4 per cent)

Bakery products: +15.0 per cent (+14.3 per cent)

Fresh fruit: +5.7 per cent (+8.3 per cent)

Apples: +10.6 per cent (+15.4 per cent)

Oranges: +14.7 per cent (+12 per cent)

Fresh vegetables: +8.9 per cent (+8.8 per cent)

Lettuce: +15.9 per cent (-3.3 per cent)

Tomatoes: +10.3 per cent (+11.9 per cent)

Potatoes: +7.6 per cent (+14.2 per cent)

Pasta products: +18.5 per cent (+17.7 per cent)

Frozen food preparations: +15.3 per cent (+16.2 per cent)

Fresh or frozen poultry: +9.8 per cent (+10.4 per cent)

Processed meat: +5.4 per cent (+6.9 per cent)

Coffee and tea: +8.5 per cent (+6.4 per cent)

Edible fats and oils: +20.3 per cent (+21.1 per cent)

Condiments, spices and vinegars: +9.5 per cent (+9.7 per cent)

Alicja Siekierska is a senior reporter at Yahoo Finance Canada. Follow her on Twitter @alicjawithaj.

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