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Corona crisis drives consumer prices up

20/05/2020

In March, consumers in the Netherlands saw an increase in the price of bread, potatoes, eggs, beef, pork and poultry meat, whereas dairy and vegetable prices remained more or less stable. Over a period of two months – February and March – the prices of poultry meat and fruit increased by 3%, those of table potatoes by more than 5% and the price of pork by 10%. The price increases are related to the increased demand in retail. Demand from the catering sector has come to a standstill due to the lockdown as a result of corona measures.

While consumers payed more in shops, potato growers and cattle breeders selling cattle saw their selling prices drop considerably – by respectively 11% and 4% - due to a strong decrease in foreign demand. The chip potato sector is suffering from a collapse in the global demand. The farm-gate price of milk was already under pressure in March (-1%). The effects of the corona crisis aren’t visible yet in the March figures for the poultry meat and pork chains. Worldwide stockpiling by consumers of wheat flour has given farm-gate prices a boost.

These are some of the findings from the bimonthly notes to the Food Price Monitor of Wageningen Economic Research and Statistics Netherlands.

Starting from this update, the Producer Price Index (PPI) is based on domestic sales. Previously, the PPI of the sum total of output prices (including export) was used. The PPI of domestic sales is a better indicator of price developments in Dutch chains.

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Actual food prices
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Products per chain: Product prices
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