Bread price boom denied by Hovis

26 June 2001

Bread price boom denied by Hovis

By Tom Allen-Stevens

RANK Hovis, the milling and baking group, has hit back at accusations that the price of bread is set to rise by 20% because of wet weather.

Bread prices are set to soar in anticipation of a “horror harvest” according to a story in the Daily Express on Tuesday (26 June).

But Hovis spokesman David Walker said: “The picture becomes confused by promotional pricing and occasional deep discounting of value lines by supermarkets.”

The recommended retail price of a Hovis wholemeal loaf is 63p and has been for the past two years, said Mr Walker.

Although Hovis bread has been available at a promotional price of 49p or even 45p a loaf, prices will rise to about 54p following a re-launch of the brand.

But Mr Walker said that the decision to raise prices – made by major retailers — was unconnected to the low wheat harvest expected this year.

“Currently markets are predicting a year-on-year rise of 20 per tonne for milling wheat following this harvest,” he added.

“This would lead to a 4p per loaf rise in price by the end of the summer.”

Mr Walker said the price of bread had gradually drifted downwards with wheat prices but this trend was now likely to be reversed.



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