Cost of living: The most popular brands that have skyrocketed in price over the past two years

Some of Britain’s most popular branded goods have soared in price over the past two years – with a range of items now costing double, according to new research.

An investigation of which? looked at 79 brands and compared prices at six major supermarkets (Asda, Morrisons, Ocado, Sainsbury’s, Tesco and Waitrose) over a 30-day period from 21 September to 20 October in both 2020 and 2022.

Aldi and Lidl were not included in the study because they did not have enough comparable items.

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Of the items on their shopping list, Heinz Tomato Ketchup – from top to bottom (460g) – saw the biggest average percentage increase overall, with 53% (91p) across the six retailers.

But at one retailer it had gone up by as much as 70%, an increase of £1.06.

The second biggest average increase among the brands included in Which?’s list was Dolmio Lasagne Sauce (470g) which increased by 47% or 61p across the six supermarkets over the two years.

In one supermarket, the price increased by as much as 107% – or £1.09.

One of the biggest leaps was made with branded butter. Anchor Spreadable butter tub 500g increased by £1.31 (45%) on average across all six supermarkets over the two-year period.

Meanwhile, Lurpak spreadable lightly salted tub 500g saw an average increase of £1.17 (35%).

The spread hit the headlines earlier this year after it was discovered that a packet costs more than £7 in some supermarkets.

Twinings of London Everyday 100 Tea Bags had the sharpest individual rise in absolute terms in a supermarket – £2.33 (64%) extra in 2022 compared to the base price in 2020. Across the six retailers, tea bags rose an average of 64p (17%).

But branded goods are not alone in seeing price increases – the price of discount goods rose by 17% in the 12 months to September, more than average inflation for food and drink.

The figures, based on web-scraped supermarket data for 30 grocery items, showed the cost of goods had already risen by 7% in the year to April.

In the last year tea increased by 46%, crisps by 39%, bread by 38% and biscuits by 34%.

Overall, consumer goods inflation is at 14%, and households are facing a £643 increase in their average annual bill.

Sue Davies, which one? Head of Food Policy, said: “Our research shows the shocking rate of inflation on some of the country’s favorite branded foods, which is far higher than the national average, and highlights why it is so important for retailers to give people a choice of product range.

“Supermarkets need to ensure that budget items for healthy and affordable essentials are widely available in their stores, including smaller convenience stores. Promotions should be targeted at those who need it most and people supported to easily compare the price of products to get the best the value.”

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It comes as data found last month that million households skipped meals or struggling to put healthy food on the table.

Around 85% of people in the UK spend less on food shopping as a result cost of living squeeze, usually by keeping an eye out for articles on marketing, consumer group research Which? proposes.

Among the 9% who said they find it “very difficult” to get by, half said their households skipped meals, as did a quarter of those who find the current situation quite difficult.

The 30 brands with the biggest price increases:

Heinz Tomato Ketchup – top to bottom 460 g (53%)

Dolmio Lasagna sauce 470 g (47%)

Heinz Classic Cream Of Chicken Soup 400g (46%)

Dolmio Bolognese Original Pasta Sauce 500g (46%)

Anchor spreadable butter tub 500 g (45%)

Heinz Tomato Soup 400 g (44%)

Colman’s Classic Mint Sauce 165g (44%)

Colman’s horseradish sauce 136 g (44%)

Batchelor’s Super Noodles Bbq Beef Flavor 90g (43%)

Hovis granary whole grain 800 g (43%)

Sharwood’s Butter Chicken Simmer Sauce X 420 g (39%)

Cravendale semi-skimmed milk 1000ml (38%)

Sharwood’s Balti cooking sauce 420 g (38%)

Sharwood’s Korma Sauce 420g (38%)

Lurpak Expandable lightly salted tub 500g (35%)

Hellmann’s Real Squeezy Mayonnaise 750ml (35%)

Muller Corner Vanilla & Banana Chocolate Balls & Flakes 6x130g 780g (34%)

McCain home chips straight cut 1000 g (34%)

Birds Eye 10 original potato waffles 567g (33%)

Green Giant Salt Free Naturally Sweet Sweet Corn 198g (30%)

Dr. Oetker Ristorante Mozzarella Pizza 335g (30%)

Birds Eye Frozen Garden Peas 375 g (28%)

Cathedral City Extra Ripe 350g (26%)

Walkers Cheese & Onion Crisps 6X25g 150g (26%)

Pukka Pies All Steak Pie 209 g (26%)

Magnum almond ice cream 4 x 100 ml 400 ml (26%)

Hovis soft white thick loaf of bread 800 g (24%)

McVities biscuits ginger nuts 250 g (22%)

Hovis Soft White Medium Bread Loaf 800 g (22%)

Cif Power And Shine Bathroom cleaning spray 700ml (22%)

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