In May 2018, VEGETABLE prices decreased for the second consecutive month, and the m/m decline in prices (-11.1%) dropped to their lowest value since last July. As a result, the y/y change in VEGETABLE prices, after a small upward change in April, shrank again and was reduced to negative 9.8%. Interestingly, the y/y change was positive until the end of 2017, but remained negative from the beginning of the current year.

On the product level, all of the prices of greens, which the AGRIndex tracks, increased; green haricot beans prices increased the most. This legume vegetable price added almost one-fourth to its May 2017 value in the last 12 months’ time, which is consistent with the 35% decline of green haricot bean production in 2017 (2,900 tons, GeoStat), compared to 2016 (4,500 tons, GeoStat). The same logic, but the opposite result, is also true for garlic. The price of garlic dropped by 22%, the largest drop since the last May, while production increased by 20.7% (2,900 tons in 2016, and 3,500 tons in 2017, according to GeoStat).

In May 2018, the AGRIndex fell by -4.2% - the biggest decline since May 2016 (interestingly, the biggest m/m drop in prices in 2017 was also observed in May). DAIRY prices lost as much as 14.8% of their April values, while VEGETABLE prices decreased by 11.1%. On the other hand, MEAT (-0.7%) prices changed only slightly, and FRUIT (-0.1%) prices were practically unchanged.

In y/y terms, AGRIndex continued its latest trend and reached a 17-month low of +2.0% in May 2018.

In April 2018, MEAT prices increased for the second consecutive month, and the m/m gain in prices (+1.8%) reached their highest value since April 2017. Nonetheless, the y/y gain in MEAT prices continued to shrink in the last month and dropped to a 14-month low of +4.7% in April.

On the product level, all types of meat except pork (-1.1%) gained in price in April 2017, but the speed and direction of the price changes were not uniform. Fresh beef prices have been increasing steadily for the last 12 months, and gained +5.6% in total, while chicken meat prices have been falling marginally in 2018, and the total difference in prices between April 2017 and last month was just +1.0%. In contrast, the gain in mutton prices has been speeding up in recent months, and the year-to-year change in April 2018, compared to the corresponding month of 2018, rose to +6.8%.

In April 2018, compared to the previous month, only MEAT (+1.8%) prices went up, while DAIRY (-8.0%), VEGETABLE (-6.8%), and FRUIT (-2.6%) prices lost significant parts of their March 2018 values. As a result, AGRIndex experienced the biggest decline in m/m terms (-1.4%) since last July.

The y/y AGRIndex also continued its latest trend and reached a 16 month low of +2.1% in April 2018. Graph #1 shows m/m changes in AGRIndex and its sub-indices: FRUIT, MEAT, DAIRY, and VEGETABLE.

Highest increase: In April 2018, compared to March 2018, pomegranate prices increased the most (+34%), but more interestingly, cabbage and broccoli prices continued to climb at almost the same pace as they did in the last month — broccoli prices increased by 31%, while cabbage prices increased by more than 18%.

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