The survey was carried out in 30 stores from five nationwide food chains where 194 items were bought - everything from pork chops to potatoes and sweets.

The average food box was 17.4 percent more expensive this year compared to January last year – an increase from SEK 5,159 to SEK 6,059.

The prices of dairy products, cheese and oil increased the most (30.3 percent) - the product category body care increased the least (8.2 percent). 

In the survey, food bags were also collected for six different types of households.

Although the differences are small, cohabitants without children had the largest percentage increase in food costs during the year (18.4 percent), while cohabitants with two small children had the smallest (17.5 percent).

Small margins

Arturo Arques believes that food prices will continue to rise, but points out that today we still spend a smaller part of our income on food than we did in 1980 (14 percent and 20 percent respectively).

He also assesses that four out of five households have such good margins that they can handle the price increases.

But for the last fifth, where almost all of the income goes to food and housing, it's tough:

- It is about the unemployed, students, guaranteed pensioners, those on sick leave and single people with children, who are usually women.

Changed behavior

A survey conducted by Swedbank among 3,100 Swedes in Kantar Sifo's online panel shows that an overwhelming majority of respondents changed their way of shopping for food due to the high prices.

They shop more often at reduced prices and in discount stores compared to before.

Every fifth woman says they shop less organically than before and every eighth respondent also says they eat less healthily today than a year ago.

But the changed consumption habits also have positive effects, says Arturo Arques:

- More and more people are opting out of semi-finished products and cooking from scratch instead.

In addition, wastage has decreased, which is pleasing.

Instead of the leftover food being thrown away, it has become food boxes.