Analysts, businesses believe big price hikes have mostly stopped

Egg cartons at a Konsum (Coop) supermarket in Räpina. September 14, 2022.
Egg cartons at a Konsum (Coop) supermarket in Räpina. September 14, 2022. Source: Aili Vahtla/ERR

Experts and businesses believe the time of skyrocketing prices in Estonia is — mostly — over as energy prices have fallen from the peak.

Raw materials, energy, and foodstuffs prices are declining and these savings are starting to be passed on to consumers, Tuesday's "Aktuaalne kaamera" (AK) reported.

But this is not the case for every item on store shelves. Eggs, meat, fruit, and vegetable prices may not be on the downward turn just yet.

Head of wholesale egg distributor Dava Foods Vladimir Sapožnin said chicken egg prices rose much later than other foods. The increase is partly to do with higher grain prices.

"It may become (more) expensive. But there's an interesting factor here that other foodstuffs do not have: There is an egg shortage around the world right now. Because avian flu is so widespread in America and Europe and Latin America too," said Sapožnin.  

Fresh fruit and vegetables. Source: Priit Mürk/ERR

Data from supermarket chain Rimi shows sugar prices have risen by 100 percent over the last year and flour, starch and eggs by 50 percent.

"They have not increased in price over the last few months, but they did at the end of last year," said Rimi's purchasing manager Talis Raak.

Some products are still rising in value.

"Root vegetables and fruit, mainly due to various weather problems in southern European countries, which have reduced both yields and quality. Chilled meat and processed meat are also a new group," said Raak.

However, the general trend is towards stabilization, Raak said.

Kristo Aab Source: ERR

Last year, prices shot up between January-June and have stayed high ever since. But in recent months there has been a dip, said LHV bank analyst.

"Price rises are moderating and will hopefully return to normal levels in the second half of the year," he said.

Aab said commodity, energy and food prices are all lower than last year's peak prices.

"But in the current unpredictable global situation, there is nothing to say that they won't go up again," he told AK.

Inflation, currently over 18 percent, should fall to between 3-5 percent by the end of the year, he said.


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Editor: Marko Tooming, Helen Wright

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