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Impacts of COVID-19 will drive up costs of vegetables, baked goods: Researchers
Researchers suggest produce and baked goods will cost more due to the COVID-19 pandemic
OTTAWA -- Your fresh vegetables and baked goods are expected to cost more this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, while it will be cheaper to eat out.
Dalhousie University and the University of Guelph have issued an update on its food price forecast for 2020.
Overall, food prices are expected to increase by the two to four per cent this year that was initially forecasted in the December report.
But the forecast now predicts the cost of vegetables will increase more than the two to four per cent expected in December. Bakery goods will also increase more than the two per cent expected.
The report looks at fluctuations in oil prices, currency exchange rates and other market indicators since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic to analyze grocery prices across Canada.
Researchers at Dalhousie and the University of Guelph say the weakened dollar will impact the costs of items that Canadians import.
“If the dollar drops further, many items we import will cost more, from produce to canned goods, to many processed foods we purchase regularly.”
The report says there is “the possibility” of fruit prices decreasing as the Canadian harvest begins in the summer.
Restaurant prices were expected to increase two to four per cent this year, but researchers now say menu prices will “drop significantly, due to the substantial disruption the sector is experiencing.”
The Researchers at Dalhousie University and the University of Guelph warn the costs companies face to deal with the surge in online orders may be “mostly downloaded to consumers.” Stores also face higher operating costs due to higher wages and sanitation measures put in place during the COVID-19 pandemic.