To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what has been the increase in food prices in the last year; and what was the comparable figure over the same period 10 years ago.
The latest figures from the retail prices index indicate that in the 12 months to October 1987 food prices increased by 3 per cent. This compares with an increase of 13·6 per cent. in food prices in the period from October 1976 to October 1977.
To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what has been the increase in food prices since 1979, and what was the comparable rise in prices generally.
Between May 1979 and November 1987 the annual rate of increase in food prices was 5·7 per cent. while the rate for retail prices as a whole was 7·8 per cent. These increases can be compared with those of 16·4 per cent. and 15·4 per cent. respectively during the period in office of the last Labour Administration. These figures reflect the success of the Government's policies.