Food prices have jumped 61 percent in Iran in the past 12 months compared with the previous 12-month period, the latest figures published on Saturday show.

The Statistical Center of Iran (SCI), the only government outfit publishing regular inflation and other economic figures, said this was a record inflation rate in Iran.

While overall inflation is more than 45 percent, food prices have soared higher leading to recent local media references to “hidden hunger” among Iranians.

Prices for basic food items, such as cooking oil jumped by 94 percent and dairy products by 71 percent.

Us sanctions since 2018 have deprived the country of oil export revenues forcing a defiant government to print money, fueling inflation and effectively devaluing the national currency. The rial has dropped almost ninefold since late 2017.

Governmental bodies have usually under-reported inflation and unemployment and based on media reports on prices, the real rate of inflation could be much higher than official figures. Earlier this year there were reports of triple-digit rise in food prices.

There are increasing calls from former officials and influential personalities in Iran for the government to act and try to reach an agreement with the United States over Iran’s nuclear program.

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