The price of our basket of fruit and veg fell for the second survey in succession, to a level 1.7% lower than it was five weeks ago.

The basket is now 1.8% less expensive than at the same time last year, and 15% cheaper than when the survey began on January 4, 2005.

Loose new potato prices accounted for the biggest fall, down 14.7% since 10 July, having fallen a similar amount in the previous survey as supplies switched fully to UK crop. Loose onions fell 14.1%, dropping back from their 42% rise in the July survey. The price of loose mushrooms fell 8.8%.

Cherry tomatoes provided the basket's greatest price rise, up 14.5%. They are now 16.2% more expensive than a year ago.

Growers have warned that the extended dry spell is expected to affect supplies of common British vegetables, and that Continental Europe is experiencing a similar shortfall due to the hot weather and low rainfall. Beans and peas are said to be 20% down.

Green/dwarf beans rose 7.4% in price, though this is based on figures from three retailers instead of four, as Tesco appears to have ceased stocking them. This makes them 23.2% more expensive than at this time last year.

Pears were 3.7% higher in price than five weeks ago, making them 39.6% more expensive than at this time last year.