Maize and wheat price to rise

2011-06-06 00:00

ALTHOUGH the price of most food products are expected to remain stable between June and August 2011, the cost of bread and maize meal products are set to rise as a result of higher maize and wheat prices.

This is according to the latest Food Price Monitor, compiled by the National Agricultural Marketing Council (NAMC).

While the overall national Consumer Price Index (CPI) for food was at 4,8% in April 2011, there have been significant price pressures at a local level.

The latest statistics show that the CPI for food and non-alcoholic beverages in Pietermaritzburg was 5,9% in April 2011, from 5,1% in March 2011.

“Local maize prices are finding support in much higher export levels as traders manage to secure major deep-sea export agreements on the back of a local maize price that has been, and still is trading well below export parity levels,” said senior manager NAMC’s Market and Economic Research Centre, Dr André Jooste.

Researchers at FNB’s Agri Commodities division also expect domestic wheat and maize prices to rise in the short term.

Jooste is of the view that overall food prices — particularly meat and poultry — could register minimal growth in the next three months as the winter months usually signal softer meat prices.

In the case of the outlook for oils and fats, Jooste believes that prices of these products will remain stable, as most of the input price pressures have already been passed onto the consumer in the first few months of this year.

Shoppers felt the impact of significant price increases in a number of food products in the first four months of this year, including white bread (6,6% up year-on-year in April 2011), baked beans (9,5%), cake flour (almost 15%), margarine (almost 16%) and sunflower oil (29.5%).

Average food price trends:

(January 2010 to January 2011)

White bread: R7,72 (APRIL 2010); R8,23 (APRIL 2011)

Brown bread: R7,00…R7,30

2,5 kg cake flour: R15,74…R18,10

5 kg maize (super): R18,01…R16,66

750 ml sunflower oil: R12,61…R16,33

500 g margarine: R12,68…R14,70

420 g baked beans: R7,53…R8,25

White sugar 2.5kg: R18,92…R20,79

1.5 dozen Eggs: R25,70…R24,61

1 litre sachet full cream fresh milk: R7,08…R6,61

(Source: The National Agricultural Marketing Council’s Food Price Monitor.)

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