E-cigarettes, craft beer and Spotify join UK's inflation basket

Vaping: e-cigs mark changing consumer habits
Vaping: e-cigs mark changing consumer habits

E-cigarettes, craft beer and digital entertainment services are now part of the basket of goods used to calculate the UK's interest rates.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has updated the list of shopping basket items that form the basis for Britain’s consumer price index.

That totals around 700 goods and services, with a few changed every year. And as the UK becomes a nation of tech heads, mobile phone chargers and accessories are in, while sat-navs are out.

The addition of craft beer reflects the increased supermarket shelf space given over to brands from micro-breweries and specialists.

New entrant e-cigarettes were the fastest growing supermarket category in 2014, according to data from Nielsen.

The ONS also noted that traditional media was becoming less popular, with consumers favouring music streaming services, and gaming subscriptions such as Xbox Live.

Headphones have also been added to the UK’s basket.

Yoghurt and foreign exchange commission have been removed from this year’s basket due to waning popularity.

Other new additions include protein powder, reflecting a trend in gym-bunnies buying sports food supplements, melons and sweet potatoes, the ONS said.

Meanwhile, frozen pizza is replaced by chilled pizza as spend on the latter falls, while white emulsion has been replaced by coloured emulsion.

Bacon, tea, milk and bread reassuringly continue to be British staples.

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