Syngenta UK
Farminguk
28 August 2016 | Online since 2003
Scrutton Bland


3 July 2012 06:40:48 |News

Countryside inflation nearly twice national average


The cost of living in countryside areas has been rising nearly twice as fast as in urban areas over the past year.

The findings come from the Countryside Living Index, a new quarterly survey, which is launched today by rural insurer NFU Mutual. The study tracks quality of life in the countryside and includes a unique new econometric measure of rural prices.

The analysis – studying a ‘basket’ of the 21 items consumed more regularly by those living in the countryside – revealed that year-on-year ‘rural inflation’ levels averaged 7.7 per cent over 12 months – compared to the national average (CPI) of 4.3 per cent for the same period.



The figure was driven by soaring fuel prices over the last 12 months – which adversely affect those living in the countryside who are heavily dependent on personal transport. Not only are fuel prices higher but the typical rural resident has further to travel in their regular day.

Annual inflation of 13-15 per cent in electricity prices during the winter were also responsible for sustaining the rural inflation hike, along with increases in the cost of items such as pet food and tools. The comparatively high cost of heating oil, which is typically used by country people as a substitute for gas, also added to the problem of above average inflation.

And faster-rising costs for key rural goods have only exacerbated the steeper prices already faced by rural consumers, with the report identifying an estimated 5-10 per cent estimated ‘rural premium’ paid on everyday goods, with meat, tea and coffee seeing the biggest difference in price compared to urban areas.

As a result, using the data from the ‘countryside basket’, the average country-dweller now faces an additional £2,000 annual outlay on essential goods – £5,992 compared to the UK average of £3,986 (see table).

Often lacking easy access to public transport, countryside residents typically have to travel at least twice as far to reach their nearest shops and amenities as urban dwellers (5.3 miles vs 2.6 miles) according to estimated figures in the NFU Mutual survey of rural dwellers. At the same time inferior broadband speeds and reception can limit the practicality of internet shopping options which are enjoyed by others.

However, despite rising prices, rural living beat city-dwelling life satisfaction scores in most other areas, with rural-dwellers enjoying particularly higher levels of satisfaction with their health and local environment.

As a result countryside residents are happier overall and less stressed than their urban counterparts.

The Countryside Living Index will be published quarterly, with special reports on cost of living, crime, education, local economy, health and the environment in rural areas released throughout 2012.

Richard Percy, Chairman of NFU Mutual commented: “Our findings show that, on the whole, people living in the countryside have a better quality of life than their urban counterparts, but that costs associated with this are becoming increasingly difficult to bear for families on lower incomes.

“While there are clearly lots of people who pay this ‘countryside premium’ willingly, and can well afford to do so, we can not lose sight of the fact that there are also many others in rural areas who don’t enjoy the luxury of being able to move to cheaper areas and are struggling to make ends meet.”

Download

0 Comment

loginuserlogo
Name

Please enter your name


Email

Please enter your email

Please enter valid email


Comment

Please enter your comment


Post Comment

Your comment has been submitted successfully. Please wait for admin approval.


Comments

No comments posted yet. Be the first to post a comment


Canada | 26 August 2016
Canadian beef exports to EU in limbo over E. coli dispute

If differences of opinion over food safety practices are not resolved, the big promises of a new European market for Canadian beef may be a pipe dream. The Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreemen...


India | 26 August 2016
GM mustard clears hurdle in India but more remain

A government panel has cleared commercial use of what would be India's first genetically modified (GM) food crop, but politicians still have to give final approvals amid wide-spread public opposition....


USA | 26 August 2016
USDA buys $20 million in cheese from dairy farms

Moving to bolster dairy farmers who are struggling to cope with price declines, the Agriculture Department announced Tuesday it is spending $20 million - on 11 million pounds of cheese. A taxpayer ...


France | 26 August 2016
Lactalis talks with French milk producers end with no deal

A meeting between Europe's largest dairy group Lactalis and French milk producers requesting a rise in prices ended in a deadlock after 10 hours of negotiations, sources close to the talks said. ...


USA | 26 August 2016
California farmers turn to sewers for water

California's prolonged drought is forcing Central Valley farmers to scramble for water to irrigate crops. They have to be creative. One agency is even turning to a sewage plant to meet demand. Just...



Trending Now

Viewed
Discussed


Top stories you may have missed
FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

The British public are overwhelmingly in favour of keeping or strengthening...


FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

The sustained recovery of pig prices since the spring has come at a time wh...


FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

A World Trade Organisation (WTO) panel has declared the Russian import ban ...


FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

A new study has linked oilseed rape crops grown from neonicotinoid-treated ...


FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

Philip Hammond is to guarantee billions of pounds of UK government investme...


FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

Access to the foreign labour market is 'critical', according the chief exec...


FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

The Tenant Farmers Association has said the National Trust's vision for a p...


FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

Ulster farmers will 'not lie down and wave the white flag' when Brexit nego...


FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

The cost of rural crime to the UK economy costs £42.5 million a year, accor...


FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

A young farmers club member from Oxfordshire has created a petition on the ...


closeicon
Username
Password