Food, clothes and energy prices surge even as inflation dips to 8.9% in November

Price of milk jumps by a third, while sugar is 25% more expensive than last year and eggs are up by over a fifth

Inflation dropped slightly last month to just under 9 per cent, but remained high as the cost of food and clothing rose.

The Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose by 8.9 per cent year on year, down from 9.2 per cent recorded in the previous month. This marks the 14th month in a row where the annual increase has been above 5 per cent.

The rise in prices was fuelled by an increase in the price of housing and electricity, which increased by more than 27 per cent year on year. Food and drink was up by more than 11 per cent.

“Prices have been rising on an annual basis since April 2021, with annual inflation of 5 per cent or more recorded in each month since October 2021,” said statistician Anthony Dawson.


“Increased energy costs are reflected in the yearly increase of housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels with electricity up 63.5 per cent, gas up 88.7 per cent, liquid fuels (such as home heating oil) up 57.1 per cent and solid fuels up 46.8 per cent in the year.”

An increase in milk prices of almost 33 per cent, a 25 per cent rise in the cost of sugar and a 20.8 per cent hike in the price of eggs were among the factors driving food prices higher.

The cost of education fell by 7.1 per cent, while miscellaneous goods and services dropped by 0.2 per cent.

On a monthly basis, consumer prices rose by 0.3 per cent compared to October. That increase was driven by a rise in the cost of clothing and footwear, which rose 1.9 per cent, while food and drink prices were 0.7 per cent higher due to higher prices across a range of products including meat, bread & cereals, milk, cheese and eggs, and vegetables.

Alcohol and education were the only two categories to show a decline, both falling by 0.4 per cent.

The Central Statistics Office also published the national average prices for a select number of items. This showed increases for an 800g loaf of bread of 28 cent, a 55 cent increase for two litres of milk, and 77 cent rise for a pound of butter compared to last year.

Ciara O'Brien

Ciara O'Brien

Ciara O'Brien is an Irish Times business and technology journalist