inflation brands

Beer, bread and baked beans are the latest victims of Brexit, with shoppers facing price hikes on their favourite brands as suppliers struggle with surging input costs.

Supermarket prices for the three staples have surged in recent months, research by The Grocer using Brand View data shows.

Baked bean prices are up 2% year on year on average across 82 comparable SKUs in the major mults, with prices for market leader Heinz up 9% compared with last year. A 150g tin of Heinz Baked Beanz is up 10% at 53p, while a 415g tin is up 15% at 75p and a pack of four 415g tins is up 12% at £2.55 [Brand View 52 w/e 22 February 2017].

Lager prices have also shot up this year, with hikes on leading brands including Miller Genuine Draft (+10%), Foster’s (3%), Carlsberg (+4%), Red Stripe (+5%), San Miguel (+4%), Budweiser (+4%) and Beck’s (+4%).

Shoppers are also paying more for their favourite bread, with average prices for Kingsmill (+2%), Warburtons (+1%) and Hovis (+5%) all higher than last year. Prices for some Hovis loaves have surged by a third - including a 400g Hovis Medium Wholemeal Loaf up 31% to 79p, and a 400g loaf of Hovis Wheatgerm - Medium - up 31% to 97p.

British bread wheat is now commanding a £40/tonne premium on last year, an increase of around 38%, as a result of the weak pound and supply issues, warned Alex Waugh, director general of the UK flour millers’ association NABIM. There is not “a margin to take that sort of a hit in flour”, he said.

Prices for Canadian wheat have also been pushed up by the weakness in sterling, and Warburtons innovation director Darren Littler warned in December that shoppers would feel “the effect of inflation” from Brexit this year.

Hovis did not comment on whether it had increased cost prices, but said retail prices were “at the sole discretion of the retailer”.

Baked bean brands are also facing rising costs for imported ingredients like tomatoes, sugar and navy beans. However, Heinz insisted that while it kept pricing under “constant review”, it had not made any increases to rrps since last February.

Heineken, Carlsberg, Asahi and Molson Coors did not comment on the retail price increases, but AB InBev UK & Ireland said it had increased wholesale prices this month in reaction to “ongoing pressure in the beer industry”.