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    Unilever warns of price hike across brands

    Representative iStock image

    Prices of Britain’s top favourite brands, including Marmite, PG Tips and Dove soap, are set to increase as the manufacturer Unilever has warned it will hike the prices in order to cope with rising inflation.

    The consumer goods giant on Thursday (21) reported a rise in sales for the past quarter but said it has seen “strongly elevated” levels of cost, and expects this to continue into next year.  

    The prices will be increased in each of its product divisions, which includes foods and refreshments, home care, and beauty and personal care, Unilever said.

    Unilever’s finance chief, Graeme Pitkethly, said the multinational had “stepped up” its pricing in response to the very high levels of inflation.

    “We expect inflation could be higher next year,” he added.

    It is not yet clear how Unilever’s price rises will affect consumers. The company sells to businesses such as retailers, supermarkets and wholesalers who may or may not pass on higher costs to shoppers.

    The company said it had passed on previous falls in commodity costs to customers by cutting its prices. Retailers could see inflation coming through in their own-brand products, Pitkethly added.

    Unilever’s brands include Simple skin care, Sure deodorant and Vaseline. It also produces Marmite, Ben & Jerry’s ice cream, Hellmann’s mayonnaise and Knorr stocks among many others.

    Unilever added that “pricing actions are being taken in countries across Europe”.

    The report comes close in heels of  Nestlé’s announcement that its prices had risen by 2.1 per cent.

    While the consumer prices index (CPI) measure of inflation has actually slowed to 3.1% in the year to September, there are growing concerns about the cost of living in the UK.

    Inflation is expected to accelerate in the coming months due to a rise in energy costs as well as continuing disruption to UK and global supply chains.

    Consumer goods companies face soaring prices for raw materials such as energy, edible oils and packaging, as well as higher transport costs as economies recover from the Covid-19 pandemic.

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