ISET

In the middle of September, food prices increased by 12% y/y (that is, compared to September 2016).

On annual basis, the biggest price increases happened for apple (87%), potato (46%) and carrots (42%), whereas cucumber, peach and tomato, on the contrary, became cheaper by 25%, 20% and 14% respectively.

Majority of food products in the bundle became more expensive compared to the same period of the previous year leading to the overall increase of 12% in food prices offered by the largest supermarkets of Tbilisi. This finding is in line with Geostat’s data which confirms increasing trend in food prices and shows that major drivers of increase are fruits and vegetables, and dairy products.

By the end of June, food prices have increased by 8.1% y/y (that is, compared to June 2016) and decreased by 0.6% m/m (that is, compared to May 2017). During the last two weeks of the month, the biggest price increases were for milk (3.2%), cheese (2.4%) and garlic (1.9%). Eggplant, tomatoes and peaches, on the contrary, became cheaper by 26.2%, 24.1% and 17.3%, respectively.

ABOUT DAIRY SECTOR

Although milk prices increased on a biweekly basis, they exhibited a decreasing trend as summer began. As shown in the diagram, in 2017, prices are higher compared to the previous year. Most notably, they do not follow usual dynamics in milk supply. One would expect the highest prices in winter, when there is normally a shortage in milk supplies, and the lowest price in summer, when milk is abundant, but the diagram shows the highest prices in spring.

In the middle of June, food prices increased by 5.0% on an annual basis (that is, compared to June 2016), but decreased by 0.3% on a monthly basis (that is, compared to May 2017). During the last two weeks, greens, potatoes, and cabbage showed the biggest increase in prices by 29.4%, 23.8%, and 23.3%, respectively. In the meantime, tomato, cucumber and cheese prices dropped by 26.8%, 15.7% and 7.1%, respectively.

WHEAT PRODUCTION IN GEORGIA

During the last couple of years, wheat flour prices in the major supermarkets of Tbilisi ranged from 1.8 GEL/kg to 2.1 GEL/kg. According to the diagram, wheat prices were relatively low during the first half of the 2015, but increased in the second half of the year. 

By the end of May, ISET’s Retail Food Price Index increased by 5.5% y/y (compared to May 2016); on a monthly basis (compared to April 2017), retail food prices slightly decreased, by 0.4%. The largest bi-weekly price changes were recorded for seasonal food products such as fresh fruit and vegetables. Prices dropped the most for tomatoes (-28%), garlic (-21%), and cucumber (-8.3%). Prices increased the most for cabbage (23.3%), potatoes (17.7%), and greens (14.3%).

IN THE SPOTLIGHT: TOMATOES

Compared to the previous month, tomatoes became cheaper: the average price of 1 kg of tomatoes went down, from 3.65GEL to 3.34GEL. While price declines in the fresh produce category are always expected at this time of the year, tomatoes are also trading below last year’s prices.

Retail food prices increased by 3.4% on an annual basis (that is, compared to May 2016), but decreased by 1.2% on a monthly basis (that is, compared to April 2017). The biggest price increase was for cabbage, potatoes and peaches (76.5%, 30.2%, and 17.5%, respectively). The price of cucumbers, eggplants and greens became significantly lower, and decreased by 60.0%, 25.8% and 15.4% respectively.

A CLOSER LOOK AT CABBAGE PRICES

Cabbage is among the products that exhibited the largest increase in prices in May compared to the same month of the previous year. The price of cabbage now is around 1 GEL, whereas last year it was 0.47 GEL on average in the same time period. Thus, cabbage prices in the major supermarkets of Tbilisi has more than doubled y/y.

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