“We are aware of work done in Britain looking at how rising food costs are affecting consumers, but there hasn’t been any Northern Ireland-specific research,” said Mr O’Donnell, “Food and everyday household items are essential to a person’s quality of life and consumers here already endure some of the highest prices in the UK for petrol and diesel, energy and car insurance. Consumers are voicing their concerns to us and this research will explore further how rising food and grocery costs are placing an additional strain on some household budgets.”
Our source at Stream Advertising, a Belfast-based sales and marketing company said, “It's a legitimate concern for a lot of people. In these austere times people have a lot less disposable income, and yet costs continue to rise.”
The Consumer Council said its initial findings showed that 96% of respondents believed that their food and grocery bills are more expensive than a year ago. It also emerged that over 80% of people have made changes to the way they shop, cook and eat as a direct response to higher prices.
“We want to hear from consumers about how they find the cost of their weekly food shop,” said Mr O’Donnell. “We have an online survey on our website and we would call on consumers to help us by filling this out. It should take no longer than three minutes to complete.”
Our source at Stream Advertising added, “It would be interesting to see the results of the survey. I'll definitely be taking it. This information could be really helpful in getting a grip on the reality of our day-to-day financial situation at the minute.”