'Worst to come' on soaring UK food prices, says Tesco boss

Volunteers pick orders ahead of deliveries to member of the public at the Trussell Trust's Norwood and Brixton Foodbank located in St Margaret's the Queen Church in Brixton south London on January 18, 2022. (Photo: AFP)
LONDON — The "worst is still to come" over soaring food prices, Britain's biggest retailer Tesco has warned as fears grow over a cost of living crisis caused by decades-high inflation.اضافة اعلان

John Allan, chairman of the supermarket giant, warned Sunday that prices of Tesco products could spike by an average five percent in the coming months, further squeezing household budgets.

Britain is experiencing the highest rate of annual inflation in nearly 30 years, while the cost of living is set to soar further from April owing to a tax hike on UK workers and businesses plus increases in energy bills.

"The worst is still to come because ... we are impacted by rising energy prices. Our suppliers are impacted by rising energy prices," Allan told the BBC.

"So the likelihood is that that inflation trigger will rise but we're doing all we can to offset it."

The British government last week unveiled financial support for households after the UK energy regulator lifted prices to reflect the soaring natural gas and electricity markets.

British trades union umbrella body the TUC on Monday said that one in eight workers would struggle to afford the basics in the coming months, citing its own survey.

"Millions of low-paid workers face a perfect storm this April," said TUC general secretary Frances O'Grady.

"The government must do far more to help struggling families get through the tough times ahead."

UK annual inflation stands at 5.4 percent, far above the Bank of England's 2-percent target.

The bank last week delivered a successive interest rate hike — and forecast Britain's annual inflation rate would peak at 7.25 percent in April.

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