By Tamlyn Canham
The average household food basket in South Africa costs around R4, 000 pm. That’s according to Pietermaritzburg Economic Justice and Dignity research group (PMBEJD).
The research group says food prices continue to rise, putting the poorest of the poor at risk.
It recently revealed that Durban’s food basket price has ballooned in recent months compared to cities such as Joburg, Cape Town, Springbok and Pietermaritzburg.
PMBEJD says the city’s basket increased by R277,89 over the past seven days.
Cost of Joburg Household Food Basket
According to its March 2021 household affordability index, the country’s average food basket cost sits at R4 039,56.
Joburg’s average food basket cost was R4 067,23.
Data from 44 supermarkets and 30 butcheries were used to gather the information.
Maize, rice, cake flour, white sugar, sugar beans, samp, cooking oil, salt, potatoes and onions were some of the main foods prioritised by households.
Frozen chicken pieces, soup, tea, white bread and brown bread also made the list.
Cape Town’s average food basket cost R3 960,44 in March 2021, while Pietermaritzburg’s monthly average was R3 840,90.
Springbok recorded the highest average with R4 238,41.
Cost of living on the rise
The price of petrol and electricity is also on the rise. Eskom recently announced an electricity tariff increase of 15.63%, while motorists have to fork out R1 more in April.
South Africans are also feeling the pinch when it comes to the cost of farm produce.
Social media users complained about the shocking price of tomatoes. Some consumers said four potatoes were selling for around R50 at their local grocery stores.
Farmers have blamed the high costs on the scarcity of some produce.