Australians’ food security biggest cost of living concern: survey  

Australians’ food security biggest cost of living concern: survey  

A new survey into consumer sentiment has found food security to be the biggest cost of living concern.  
According to a national survey carried out by Savvy,  62 percent of Australians cite grocery prices as the greatest ongoing concern.  

The survey asked1,000 adult Australians about their cost-of-living concerns.  

Almost all demographics and states and territories highlighted grocery prices as the biggest issue. 

68 percent of people surveyed said they are cutting back on non-essential expenses to make ends meet.

67 percent of women and 58 percent men cite cost of groceries as biggest concern Petrol or fuel was the second biggest concern (47 percent) with utility bills coming in a close third (46 percent).  

Far more women (67 percent) considered food and groceries their greatest concern in comparison to men (58 percent.)  

All demographics except the 18-24-year-old cohort cited groceries as their primary concern; the 18-24s said that petrol or fuel costs as the biggest cost-of-living concern (61 percent).  

Over two-thirds (68 percent) of Australians are cutting back on non-essential expenses to deal with rising costs of living, broken down into 63 percent of men and 73 percent of women. Fifty eight percent said they were seeking cheaper alternatives to higher-priced items, while 20 percent said they were seeking additional sources of income. Only seven percent said they were not making any adjustments.  

Savvy spokesperson Adrian Edlington says that it was no surprise that food is the biggest cost of living issue for most Australians.  

“While rising cost of expenses such as rent, mortgage repayments or even fuel are big issues, none affects everyone in the same way as food does,” he said. 
“We all need to eat and the hike in grocery bills is both dramatic and obvious. To save on groceries, people will no doubt already be buying more generic brand items, shopping at bulk outlets and waiting for specials. The issue is that even by doing so, the savings are not enough to reduce financial pressure on many individuals and families.” 

The survey results come at a time when the Australian government has flagged that it is looking into what can be done about the rising cost of groceries.

“We are saying that when prices go down, when … supermarkets … are purchasing from farmers, that should result in cheaper prices for consumers,” he said.

“My government is concerned about the price of what consumers pay at Coles and Woolies and other supermarkets.”

Uniting Church agencies and congregations provide free or low cost food. For more information about services, visit the Find A Feed website here.  

The full Savvy report is available here.


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