Cost of living: New World shopper outraged over costly cheese

A New World shopper is shocked and outraged over the high price of cheese they spotted in a supermarket.

At New World in Newtown in Wellington, a block of Meadow Fresh's Tasty cheese was priced at $22.59 on Monday.

The person who took the photo told Newshub they've had to cut cheese entirely out of their diet because of how expensive it's gotten.

The cheese was priced at $22.59.
The cheese was priced at $22.59. Photo credit: Facebook/Vicdeals

"It's f**ked, [it's] getting pretty impossible to live on my $242 a week from student loan while everything seems to be up 30 percent."

Foodstuffs, which owns New World, confirmed to Newshub the price of the cheese is correct.

Foodstuffs head of public relations Emma Wooster told Newshub they are aware of the cost of living crisis New Zealanders are currently facing and said they are doing everything they can to fight inflation.

"To help fight inflation, back in August we rolled back the prices of many key products to 2021 prices at our Psk'nSave and New World stores. The rollback list includes staples we know New Zealanders want in their shopping basket, including bread, butter and block cheese," she said.

"This week at New World Newtown a 1kg block of Pams Edam cheese is at $9.99,  Pams Colby 1kg is at $9.99 and Rolling Meadow Edam 1kg is at $11.19."

Wooster explained that Tasty cheese is always a higher price than other cheese due to the manufacturing process, but added there are "always" cheaper options.

"Our actions to fight inflation and absorb supplier price increases are making a difference, Foodstuffs are holding prices below inflation for the fourth month in a row," she said.

"While food prices were 8.3 percent higher in August 2022* compared with August 2021 [*according to the Stats NZ Food Price Index], the retail price increase to Foodstuffs customers on the same basket was 6.1 percent - meaning we held prices in our stores at 2.2 percent less than inflation in August, and 2.1 percent below cost increases from suppliers."

An image of the high-priced cheese was also posted to the Wellington Facebook group Vic Deals, with a person wondering if this is New Zealand's "most expensive one kg [block] of Tasty cheese yet".

Commenters were outraged at the cheese's cost.

One person said it was "daylight robbery", while another said "the cheese crisis worsens".

In July, Statistics NZ's second quarter consumer price index (CPI) revealed annual inflation was at 7.3 percent.

It was the highest inflation rate in three decades and Kiwis were warned they would feel the pinch at the pump and the supermarket for a while.

Stats NZ also revealed in August the cost of food had increased by 8.3 percent since the same time last year.