Food prices expected to rise

2010-09-04 00:00

CONSUMERS could leave tills with slightly lighter shopping baskets over the next few months as food prices are expected to rise moderately.

The prices of fresh produce, bread and maize meal, as well as oil and fat products could rise marginally between September and November 2010.

The prices of meat and dairy products are expected to remain stable until the December festive season.

According to the latest food price monitor of the National Agricultural Marketing Council (NAMC), the strength of the rand has helped shield consumers from heftier food price rises in recent months.

Severe droughts in Russia and Ukraine as well as the riots sparked by food price increases in Maputo have highlighted the fact that stable food prices are by no means a certainty in an uncertain global economic outlook.

According to Ferdi Meyer, who compiled the outlook aspect of the report, the strength of the rand helped cushion the effects of higher world prices of wheat and maize.

However, he added: “The increase in wheat and maize prices will eventually find its way into the bread and maize meal prices over the next quarter.”

The prices of fresh produce — particularly potatoes — have ticked upward in recent months as a result of adverse weather conditions in eastern Europe.

However, Meyer said, the demand for fresh produce remains strong as consumers have opted for fewer processed foods due to budgetary constraints.

He expects the price of beef to drop slightly as a result of higher supply levels, before increasing once the holiday season begins.

The NAMC report also notes that annual food and non-alcoholic beverages inflation for July 2010 was 1,4% while the headline consumer price index for the same period was 3,7%.

July 2010 July 2009

White bread . . . . . . . . . . . . .R7,80 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . R7,87

2,5 kg cake flour . . . . . . . R15,51 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . R17,73

5 kg maize meal. . . . . . . . . R15,91. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . R16,91

750 ml sunflower oil . . . . . R13,06 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . R13,28

420 g baked beans. . . . . . . R7,93 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . R7,08

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