August in Estonian supermarkets: Prices continued rise on year

Potatoes at a market.
Potatoes at a market. Source: Ken Mürk/ERR

This August, the prices of several vegetables dropped significantly compared with July, and dairy products got a little cheaper as well, but on year, most food products had gotten considerably more expensive. Onion, carrot, rye bread, white bread and sugar prices saw the biggest increases compared with August 2022.

The rate of price increases has slowed in some product groups, however prices are continuing to rise in others, according to figures released by the Estonian Institute of Economic Research (EKI).

For example, a kilogram of sugar has jumped 53 percent in price in the span of a year, from €0.97 at the end of last summer to €1.48 last month. It did not increase on month, however.

Wheat flour got more expensive as well, with the cost per kilogram going up ten cents on year to €1.29. Compared with July, however, the price had actually gone down by one cent per kilo.

Oatmeal rose in price from €2.12 per kilogram last August to €2.37 per kilo last month, also increasing by 1 cent per kilo since July.

Rye bread and white bread prices likewise rose on year — by 27 and 36 percent, respectively. Compared with July, however, the price per kilogram of rye bread actually fell by 2 cents, however the price of white bread increased by 8 cents per kilo.

Price changes for meat products in August weren't in shoppers' favor either. Domestic ground meat prices jumped from €6.64 to €7.91 per kilogram on year, while also decreasing by 3 cents per kilo compared with the previous month.

The price of franks likewise decreased slightly from July to August, falling by 8 cents to €7.59 per kilogram. Nonetheless, the August price still indicated a 16 percent rise on year.

Other meat products went up in price both on year and on month. Smoked pork chop prices jumped 7 percent, boneless pork 10 percent, pork ribs and domestic chicken both 15 percent and cooked sausage 16 percent on year, with increases on month in the 1-2 percent range for most meat products.

Fish prices fluctuate more than those of other food prices, and the EKI tracks them both at markets and in supermarkets, between which shoppers can encounter major price differences.

At markets, chilled whole Baltic herring saw the biggest spike in price on year, jumping 47 percent from €3.90 per kilogram last August to €5.75 last month. At the same time, however, chilled whole Baltic herring cost an average of €3.58 per kilogram in supermarkets.

In supermarkets, the biggest increase in price on year was recorded for chilled perch, which had risen 19 percent since last August to reach €9.15 per kilogram. Perch prices at markets, meanwhile, did the reverse, falling 22 percent on year to €5.58 per kilogram. Trout fillet prices followed a similar pattern, decreasing by 29 percent in supermarkets while simultaneously increasing 18 percent on year at markets.

Chilled salmon fillet prices, meanwhile, went down 9 percent on year both at markets and in supermarkets last month, with prices per kilogram hitting the €22-23 range.

Compared with July, the prices of several different kinds of fish went down, with supermarket prices decreasing for whole Baltic herring, trout as well as chilled salmon, and market prices falling nearly across the board.

While several supermarket chains have announced markdowns on dairy products, the EKI only takes food items' full, not sales prices into account. Figures for these full prices indicate that dairy product prices continued to rise on year, with no product prices left untouched by the increase.

The smallest increases were recorded in the prices per kilo of domestic cheese and small packages of butter; kefir, meanwhile, went up 14 percent, and coffee creamer and cottage cheese 17-18 percent on year.

Sour cream saw the biggest price increase on year last month, jumping up by a quarter to reach €3.51 per kilo. Bagged milk prices rose by the same extent, reaching €0.84 per liter.

Daily products largely remained steady on month, with coffee creamer even going down six cents in price and domestic cheese 16 cents, costing €11.22 per kilo in August.

Eggs, meanwhile, got significantly more expensive on year. The price of domestic medium eggs had increased 18 percent, and import medium eggs 20 percent on year last month.

The price of domestic medium eggs also went up 13 cents on month, while import medium eggs were one cent cheaper than in July.

Vegetable prices saw a noticeable drop from July to August. The price of carrots fell 45 percent on month, reaching €0.77 per kilogram, while import tomato prices fell 30 and onion prices 28 percent.

Cabbage and domestic cucumber prices also fell by a quarter on month, while the price import cucumbers dropped 16 percent.

On year, however, only cucumber prices decreased in August, with domestic cucumbers falling from €3.11 to €2.81 per kilo, and import cucumbers from €2.28 to €1.85.

Other vegetable prices actually rose on year, with onion and carrot prices spiking the most — by 97 and 47 percent, respectively — to reach €1.30 and €1.52 per kilo.

The significant disparity persisted between bulk carrot and packaged carrot prices as well, with supermarkets charging €2.27 per kilogram for pckaged carrots, up 54 percent on year, and just €0.77 per kilo for bulk carrots, which went up 33 percent on year.

Potato prices, meanwhile, increased 12 percent on year in August, heads of cabbage went up 25 percent on year, import tomatoes up 26 percent and import apples 11 percent on year.


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Editor: Aili Vahtla

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