If the trip to the supermarket seems to put a bigger dent in your bank balance each week, you're not alone. Food prices are rising at an alarming rate (jumping 6.5 per cent over the last year), an increase which adds up to £260-a-year extra for the typical family. The same weekly basket of goods you bought last year now costs £5 more.

Rising food costs, shopping basket
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So what's the most expensive item on your receipt? It may pay to go vegetarian, as meat is 7.2 per cent more expensive than it was last year, according to The Office for National Statistics (ONS). But the biggest rises have been across bread and cereals (up by 8.5 per cent) and soft drinks and mineral water (up by 10.6 per cent).

A typical family with two kids fork out £76.50 a week on food and soft drinks. With food prices rising far higher than the rate at which pay is going up (the average private sector worker has received a pay rise of just 1.8 per cent), it's no wonder many people are struggling.

While many of us are already getting used to tightening our belts, economists warn that food prices may continue to rise in the coming months.

Brendan Barber, general secretary of the Trades Union Congress, told the Daily Mail that Britons are facing 'a toxic mix' of attacks on their standard of living.

"The cost of living is still rising twice as fast as wages, so our income squeeze is getting tighter every month – and will continue for some time," he said.

James Foord, from the price comparison website mySupermarket, said: "Although we have seen a drop in inflation, this drop has not benefited shoppers.

"They will not notice inflation coming down as food prices are still on the up. Shoppers need to be as clever as possible and look for the best deals around when doing the supermarket run in order to save their wallets."

Have you noticed your weekly shopping bill increase? Leave a comment below...