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In food, the rise in prices is accelerating

Pasta, oil, flour, coffee, sugar, butter, eggs or poultry… All these products cost French consumers more in March. The price of pasta jumped more than 13%, oil and flour more than 7%, and the rest of the shopping list, between 3% and 4.5%. “In March, there is frank inflation. For all consumer goods, it rose from 0.58% in February to 1.49% in March. On food products alone, it is, on average, 1.73%”, says Emily Mayer, of the IRI institute, which scrutinizes consumer purchases at the checkout counters of super and hypermarkets. The result of commercial negotiations between manufacturers and distributors intended to set the annual prices for national brand products, completed on 1er March, therefore begins to make itself felt. However, the effects should be even more noticeable in the coming weeks. “We expect a 3% increase in April”believes M.me Mayer.

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It’s only a beginning. Barely had the ink on the signed contracts dried than the manufacturers were already calling for the resumption of discussions. The war in Ukraine has amplified an already significant phenomenon of generalized increase in the prices of oil, gas, cereals, oils, transport, packaging… To this is added, for France, an epizootic of avian flu an unprecedented scale, which is reducing poultry flocks. In this context, the government announced a resilience plan, which notably provides for the reopening of trade negotiations.

“The 3% on average obtained is not enough. Faced with “Putin inflation”, an immediate 8% to 10% increase is needed to safeguard our agriculture”, declared Christiane Lambert, president of the FNSEA, during the congress of the agricultural union, Tuesday, March 29. Everyone does their thing. The Avril group, which markets Lesieur sunflower oil, even if it gets its supplies from French farmers, is faced with the rise in the price of this oilseed, of which Ukraine markets half of the world’s volumes.

“Rise in the cost of transport”

“We obtained an increase of 9% to 10%, to take into account the increase in the prices of agricultural raw materials. But that did not take into account the inflation of the cost of energy, of transport. We are asking at least as much now,” explains Jean-Philippe Puig, Managing Director of Avril. The French poultry industry is suffering from the rising cost of cereals and the avian flu epidemic. Chicken had already been revalued by 9% in 2021. We had a 5% increase in March. There is still 20% to pass “says Gilles Huttepain, vice-president of Anvol, interprofession of meat poultry.

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