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Consumer Pizza Price Index: Sizing up your options

February 5, 2024, 11:00 a.m. (EST)

February 9 is National Pizza Day, so in honour of it, we’re introducing a brand-new dataset—the Consumer Pizza Price Index (CPPI). Kidding…sort of.

Using December 2023 data from our actual Consumer Price Index, we can give you an idea of how much more dough your favourite pie is costing you these days, along with a few historical comparisons. (Don’t get crusty with us, we just report the numbers!)

From the restaurant

Prices for food purchased from restaurants—including full-service, fast food and take-out, and your favourite local pizza place—increased 5.6% year over year in December. This marks the 17th straight month that this category has risen above headline inflation (+3.4%).

Still, prices have been increasing at a slower pace compared with the 8.2% year-over-year increase in January 2023, and the all-time high sticker shock of 21.4% in July 1974.

From frozen

You’ll just have to let it go when trying to reckon with the 10.7% year-over-year increase in December 2023 in prices for frozen food preparations, which include frozen pizza. This is on the heels of an all-time increase of 20.1% in July 2023.

Since October 2022, price increases in this category have mostly remained above those for the more general category of food purchased from stores, which were up 4.7% year over year in December 2023.

From scratch

If you’re starting from scratch, then you’ve got some time—so let’s work out the CPPI numbers for some common ingredients while the oven preheats.

Prices for flour and flour-based mixes were up 3.8% year over year in December, a more modest gain compared with January 2023 (+23.2%). So, double the batch. Cheese prices (+2.4%) also saw a small yearly gain in December.

December also saw a year-over-year price gain for other processed meat (+4.9%), which includes deli-style sausages, as well as ham and bacon (+2.0%). If you think pineapple belongs on pizza alongside the ham, then it’s worth noting that prices for it and other fresh fruit were also up (+4.6%).

Prices for fresh vegetables, including onions and green peppers, were up 0.5%, while those for condiments, spices and vinegars (including pizza sauce), rose 6.1%.

If you want to make the sauce from scratch, make lots! Prices for tomatoes were down 11.3% in December—though, of all the items discussed so far, it’s actually tomatoes that posted the largest yearly gain of all time: a whopping 134.4% in April 1981, soon after flour and flour-based mixes saw a 50.1% yearly increase in March of that year.

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