Minimum Wage Hike Lifts Ontario Restaurant Prices Most Since 1991

Ontario’s minimum wage increase is showing up on restaurant menus.

Prices for food purchased at the province’s eateries rose 1.9 percent in January from a month earlier, Statistics Canada reported Friday from Ottawa. That coincides with legislative changes that saw the minimum wage increase more than 20 percent at the start of this year to C$14 ($11) an hour.

Menu Costs

Ontario restaurant prices jump most since federal sales tax introduced

Source: Statistics Canada

*Data is not seasonally adjusted

The price jump was the biggest since January 1991, when then Prime Minister Brian Mulroney introduced a federal goods and services tax, which drove Ontario restaurant prices up 7.2 percent, the biggest one month gain on record.

Rising restaurant costs in January were part of a broader trend, with total inflation rising 0.9 percent in Ontario and 0.7 percent nationally.

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