Food prices have risen at the highest annual rate since records began in 1986, with supermarkets paying 8.4 per cent more that last year for milk, bread, meat, and ready-made meals.

Bread has hit the £1 mark for the first time, and butter now costs over £1 per pack, which is 41 per cent more than a year ago, according to The Office of National Statistics.

Food price increases will mean that a family spending an average of £70 per week on their food shopping will now pay £400 more a year. The increases are mainly because last year’s terrible summer weather adversely affected crops such as peas and potatoes, as well as forcing farmers to give their animals expensive winter feed.

Globally, poor harvests (particularly in Australia) have led to decreased wheat supplies, although demand is increasing dramatically in India and China particularly.

Utility bills have also increased dramatically for British households, with the average bill being £1,026 per year, which is 13 per cent up from last year.

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