Woolworths customer stunned by price of basic shop: 'Price gouging'

The cost of a 12-item purchase is making heads spin.

A Woolworths customer has expressed his disappointment at the high price of his modest grocery shop, highlighting the financial strain many Aussies are under as experts predict minimal relief from soaring costs in the foreseeable future.

The Reddit user snapped a pic of his 12-item purchase, which included two types of sliced cheese, butter, wraps, eggs, burger sauce, mineral water and cordial, as well as some fresh rocket and beef mince.

Astonished at the $78.80 price tag for so few items, fellow shoppers remarked that current grocery prices are nothing short of "depressing". "Shopping just makes me sad these days," one user lamented, "I do a lot of standing looking at the aisles and then walking away as everything is just too expensive."

Woolworths grocery shop
This small selection of groceries cost $78.80 at Woolworths. Source: Reddit

Others vented their frustration at supermarket giants Coles and Woolies, accusing the retailers of taking advantage of the economic downturn. "While inflation is an ongoing issue, corporate gouging is a big player in current pricing," one customer wrote.

"Coles and Woolworths are price gouging at the moment, it's pretty blatant," another agreed, before suggesting customers consider alternate supermarkets. "Shop elsewhere, don't let them continue to price gouge... 500g of beef mince is about six bucks at Aldi, less than half the price." Others echoed this sentiment, even suggesting people purchase their fresh meat at wholesalers.

Prices hikes set to continue

Aussies are likely facing another year of rising prices, with supply chain issues predicted to continue plaguing the retail industry through 2023, an expert has warned. RMIT Professor Vinh Thai of the School of Accounting, Information Systems and Supply Chain previously told Yahoo Finance that disruptions to the global supply chain caused by the Covid-19 pandemic have not eased due to the ripple effect of lockdowns and restrictions affecting labour and logistics.

Woolworths supermarket storefront
Woolworths shoppers are likely facing another year of rising prices, experts warn. Source: Getty

"It is an ongoing issue. From late last year until now, we are seeing the increase in the cost of everything – all the essential commodities, including fuel and transport. Of course, we understand that the increase in the price of fuel directly affects the price of everything else," Thai said.

Woolworths, Coles offer some relief

Both Woolworths and Coles have recently launched price-saving campaigns in an effort to relieve cost-of-living pressures on Aussie consumers. Woolies has announced they will drop the prices of 400 staples as part of their autumn Prices Dropped program, and Coles has brought back Flybuys-member discounts, reducing the prices of more than 20 grocery staples for the next month, including chicken schnitzels, yoghurt and school lunchbox items.

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