South Africa’s inflation has picked up pace more than expected in October. Food inflation reversed course and for the first time in 6 consecutive months accelerated slightly by 0.8 ppt to 8.8% y/y in October 2023. Fruit inflation surged to a 34-month high of 8.5% year-on-year in October from 6.7% year-on-year in the prior month and further quickened by 2.7ppts to 5.8% month-on-month.

Bananas posted the biggest annual increase of 42.1% year-on-year (+R6.28/kg) and were up 11% month-on-month (+R2.10/kg at R21.20/kg. They were followed by apples and pears with increases of 13.9% year-on-year (+R2.59/kg) and 11.5% year-on-year (+R2.34/kg) respectively at R21.23/kg and R22.62/kg.

There was a sharp decline in volumes of fruit commodities on markets during October with bananas, pears, and apples falling by 50%, 41%, and 10% year-on-year respectively. Vegetable inflation set a record high of 23.6% year-on-year in October from 15.3% year-on-year previously and increased sharply by 7.3ppts to 7.1% month-on-month.

[ R1 = €0.05 ]