Freshman Council Polls Prices At Cambridge Food Markets

To help the economy-minded Harvard student decide where to spend his allowance, the Freshman Council issued a comparative survey yesterday of the prices of commonly purchased products at local stores.

The Council compared prices of both large and small food stores in Cambridge, ranging from Cahaly's to the Porter Square Star Market. The survey found that the stores in high-rent areas were more expensive than the chain stores.

The statement that was appended to the statistics garnered in the survey explained that the poll of prices was taken "close to a month and a half ago" and that prices may have changed since then.

It also cited the fact that the survey was made after Phase III had gone into effect, but that this should not have had a "great effect" on food prices.

However, John Lichter, manager of the Broadway Supermarket, said yesterday that prices had soared in the month of February.

Relatively Uniform

Prices on staple items were relatively uniform, the survey showed. Milk and cookies cost only a few cents more at Cahaly's than at the A&P; or Star Market, while products like coffee and softdrinks were from 25 to 33 per cent higher.

Small retail stores depend increasingly on household goods and non-essential foods to make up their losses on cereal and dairy products, Lichter explained.

Walking Time

Several small store owners complained of decreasing profits. They said that while wholesale prices have risen sharply, retail prices have not yet reflected the increase.

The survey also noted, in minutes, the walking time between the surveyed markets and Harvard Square.

The surveyers said that the discrepancy in prices at outlets of the same chain--10 per cent in some instances--could be attributed to the daily fluctuations in food prices.