Dalhousie University – in conjunction with University of Guelph – has published the 10th annual Canada Food Price Report, predicting that the average Canadian family will spend an additional $487 in 2020. The food bill could reach $12,667, driven mostly by higher meat prices.
The predictive analytics model which applies machine learning has proven to be quite accurate. The 2019 prediction was that a family would spend $12,157 on food. The actual spend was an extra $23 -- $12,180.
Sylvain Charlebois, a professor of food distribution and policy at Dalhousie University, says that the target for food inflation is about 2 to 2.5 per cent. The 2020 prediction will exceed that bracket.
In 2020, meat will see the highest increases (4% to 6%), while restaurants, seafood and vegetables will all see increases (2% to 4%). This is followed by fruits (1.5% to 3.5%), dairy (1% to 3%), and bakery (0% to 2%).
The report also predicts that three stories will continue to dominate headlines in 2020:
1. Single-use plastic packaging
2. Climate change and carbon tax
3. Retailing artificial intelligence
Source: Dalhousie University December 4, 2019 news release