New statistics show food prices held steady between January and February but were 5.3% higher than in February last year.
Statistics New Zealand says food prices rose by just 0.1% in February.
Fruit and vegetables had the biggest impact, falling by 1.7% because of a seasonal drop in apple prices.
That offset rises in the prices of dairy, yoghurt and eggs.
Statistics New Zealand says the 5.3% increase since February last year was partly due to GST going up from 12.5% to 15% in October.