Beans and veggie sausages debut in ONS’ inflation basket

Tinned beans and meat-free sausages have been added to the Office for National Statistics (ONS) basket of goods which is used as a metric to calculate the effect of the cost-of-living crisis.

The move comes as the ONS’ metric of measuring inflation has come under fire for not accurately representing product selections of lower-income families.

As inflation has hit a three-decade high and the war in Ukraine is expected to push the CPI to 15%, the ONS has revised the 700 products typically used to calculate inflation.

READ MORE: Food inflation could soar to 15% by mid-year following Ukraine invasion

In total 19 items have been added and 15 removed, with doughnuts being swapped out for multi-packs of cakes.

The additions which have been made aim to accommodate lifestyle changes made during the pandemic, with more shoppers considering healthier or vegetarian options.

Other household items added include anti-bacterial wipes and loungewear, which was swapped in for formal men’s suits, to reflect Covid-related hygiene and work-from-home patterns.

“The 2022 basket of goods sees some really interesting changes, with the impact of the pandemic still evident in our shopping habits,” ONS head of economic statistics Sam Beckett said.

On top of this, the ONS revealed it would launch a personal inflation calculator to use personalised spending patterns to figure out an individual’s inflation experience.

The statistical agency also said it would work with retailers to receive data straight from the tills to calculate the availability of brands and items in shops.

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