Food inflation eased a tad to 9.32 per cent for the week ended October 1 from 9.41 per cent in the previous week but the decline brought only statistical relief to the common man as prices of almost all edibles such as vegetables, fruits, milk, protein-rich items and even cereals continued to rule dearer.
The WPI data released here on Thursday show that while vegetables turned dearer by 13.01 per cent on a year-on-year basis, prices of fruits and milk were also higher by 12.19 per cent and 10.35 per cent, respectively. Alongside, not only were the protein-rich items such as eggs, meat and fish costlier by 9.92 per cent on a yearly basis, even cereals were 5.41 per cent more expensive with prices of rice up by 5.86 per cent.
The fall in food inflation could be attributed to a moderation in the rate of price rise for some of the items on a week-on-week basis, even though they remained higher on an annual basis.
The fall could also be attributed to the high inflation rate of 17 per cent in the corresponding year-ago period, a phenomenon dubbed the ‘high base effect’ in economic parlance.
On an annual basis, onion prices declined by 10.15 per cent and wheat by 0.24 per cent.
Overall, inflation in primary articles was recorded at 10.60 per cent during the week ended October 1, down from 10.84 per cent in the previous week. Primary articles account for over 20 per cent of wholesale price index inflation.
Inflation in non-food articles, which include fibres, oilseeds and minerals, stood at 9.59 per cent during the week under review, compared to 10.77 per cent in the previous week.