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Updated: September 1, 2011 14:44 IST

Double-digit food inflation disturbing: Pranab

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A file picture of Union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee.
The Hindu A file picture of Union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee.

Terming the double-digit food inflation as "disturbing", Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee on Thursday said supply of food items needed to be improved to deal with the price rise.

"Food inflation has gone up ... This is really disturbing," he told reporters here.

His comments came after data showd that food inflation touched the double-digit mark after a gap of over five months.

It was at 10.05 per cent for the week ended August 20, as onion, fruits, vegetables and protein-based items turned more expensive.

"Inflation is always a matter of concern and we shall have to ensure and improve the supply of food items," Mr. Mukherjee said.

As per the official data released today, prices of onion soared by 57.01 per cent year-on-year, while that of potato by 13.31 per cent during the week under review.

Fruits became dearer by 21.58 per cent and vegetables overall by 15.78 on an annual basis.

The prices of egg, meat and fish were up 12.62 per cent, while milk and cereals became dearer by 9.22 per cent and 4.64 per cent, respectively.

Commenting on the latest numbers, Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia also expressed concern, but said seasonal factors have a role to play.

"Inflation is a worry... If you see the data, last year at this time food prices went down and then rose again. So, I would not be surprised of prices rise a little bit," Mr. Ahluwalia said.

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