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Food bills up £750 within a year

Rising food prices are adding an extra £750 to the average family's food shopping bill, it has been claimed. According a study conducted by the Office of National Statistics (ONS), wholesale food prices were up 7.4 per cent during 2007. This is the highest rate of increase the ONS began monitoring food prices in 1992 and has pushed the cost of a consumer's average basket up by 12 per cent in a year, the Telegraph reports. The rising bills are likely to put added pressure on homeowners already struggling with mortgage repayments and rising energy bills, experts have predicted. It is also anticipated that the rising inflation will make a cut in the base rate of interest less likely in the short term. Philip Hammond, the shadow chief secretary to the Treasury, said: "After ten years of Gordon Brown's economic management, we are now faced with a classic squeeze. "The economy is slowing down and at the same time inflation is rearing its ugly head again."

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