Fresh food prices have shot up in the Balearics. | Majorca Daily Bulletin reporter


The Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose by three tenths of a percentage point in February in the Balearics, bringing its annual rate to 6%, with an increase of up to 15.8% on the prices of food and non-alcoholic beverages, according to data published today by the National Statistics Institute (INE).

Among foodstuffs, the price of sugar shot up by 41.7% year-on-year, while milk is 31.3% more expensive and oils and fats by 26.7%. This was followed by fresh vegetables and cereals and derivatives (20.1%), as well as dairy products (20%).

Other food preparations (17.8%), mineral water, soft drinks and juices (17.7%), eggs (16.6%), coffee, cocoa and infusions (16.4%), pork (15.4%), poultry and other meat (15.2%) also rose, potatoes and potato preparations (14.5%), beef and veal (12.7%), vegetable preparations (11.5%), fresh and frozen fish (10.1%), canned fruit and nuts (9.6%), bread (9.5%), sheep meat (8.8%) and fresh fruit (7.2%).

The Ministry of Economic Affairs has highlighted that in February in Spain, fresh foodstuffs in particular became more expensive.

“Vegetables and fresh fruit have experienced a temporary reduction in supply as a result of unfavourable weather conditions in Spain and other EU countries, which has led to an increase in prices due to the rise in international demand,” it pointed out.

In February, in the Balearics, the year-on-year rises in the group of alcoholic beverages and tobacco also stand out, with inflation of 10.1%; hotels, cafes and restaurants, 8.7%; and household goods, with prices 7.8% higher than a year earlier.

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Leisure and culture (5.5%), clothing and footwear (5.2%), education (3.6%) and medicine (3.5%) are also more expensive than a year ago. Transport and communications rose by 2.7%, although within the headings it is worth highlighting the 29.5% drop in urban public transport.

In year-on-year terms, only the housing sector - which includes energy - fell by 7.3%, due to the 19.3% drop in heating, lighting and water distribution costs.

For its part, core inflation (excluding unprocessed food and energy products) stood at 8% year-on-year in the Balearics, is above the national rate (7.6%).

In Spain, core inflation reached its highest rate since December 1986.
Spanish consumer prices rose 6.0% in the 12 months through February, up from 5.9% in the period through January, final data released by the National Statistics Institute.
The final reading was lower than the 6.1% flash estimate released by INE two weeks ago. Analysts polled by Reuters had also seen 12-month inflation through February at 6.1%.

Fresh food prices recorded a significant rise in February, up 16.6% year-on-year, one point higher than in January, driven by rises in vegetables, legumes and meat.

The government approved a reduction in VAT on some basic food products at the beginning of the year, but although Economy Minister Nadia Calvino said the shopping basket had begun to stabilise, food prices have continued to rise.
Compared to the previous month, food prices rose 2%.

Processed food registered the highest increase with a 16.8% rise, pushing core inflation, which strips out volatile fresh food and energy prices, to 7.6% year-on-year, up from 7.5% a month before.
The core inflation rate was at its highest level since INE started reporting it in 2002.
The 12-month European Union-harmonised price was also revised down to 6.0% from a flash estimate of 6.1%, INE said.