Food prices increased 12.1% in the 12 months to the end of March, the biggest annual increase since 1989.
The increase was slightly above the 12% recorded in February.
Increases in the price of groceries have continued their steady upward march – the 13.7% increase was the biggest contributor to headline food inflation.
Cage eggs, potato chips and yogurt six-packs were the biggest drivers in the grocery category, Statistics New Zealand said.
Fruit and vegetables were up 22.2%, a slight decrease from the 23.1% recorded in February. Cyclone Gabrielle and other extreme weather events have impacted the supply of fresh produce in recent months.
Prices for meat, poultry and fish continue to fall, while increases in other categories have been less pronounced.