Average family to pay $400 more for groceries next year, report estimates

 An annual report estimates the average Canadian family will pay about $400 more for groceries and roughly $150 more for dining out next year.

The joint report by the University of Guelph and Dalhousie University estimates overall food prices will rise between 1.5 and 3.5 per cent next year.

Vegetables will see the biggest jump, an expected four to six per cent, due to weather causing poor growing conditions and increased demand for alternative proteins.

Meat and seafood prices are anticipated to fall for the first time in the report's nine-year history.

Lead researcher Sylvain Charlebois says his team believes there's an oversupply in the market, while demand for animal protein is softening.

The report estimates meat prices should fall between one and three per cent, while seafood costs may remain the same or drop up to two per cent.