The price of fresh vegetables and eggs has increased substantially between April and June this year according to the National Statistics Office (NSO). Higher costs of fuels and animal feeding stuff have increased productions costs in agriculture.
The producer price index for agricultural products in the second quarter stood at 119.87 points, up by 3.5 per cent from 115.81 points in the corresponding quarter of 2011.
An increase in the fresh vegetables price index (+4.4 per cent) was essentially brought about by a general decrease in their supply. As a result, higher producer prices were registered for cauliflowers (+52.4 per cent), onions (+24.9 per cent) and sugar melons (+23.8 per cent). Similarly, the price of potatoes rose by 22.3 per cent over the comparative quarter.
During the second quarter, the fruit price index registered a decrease of 13.8 per cent. This was mainly due to an increase in the production of strawberries, the price of which dropped by 35.1 per cent over the comparative period in 2011.
The animals slaughtering index rose by 2.8 per cent over the comparative period in 2011, as higher prices were registered for bulls (+12.2 per cent) and pigs (+5.6 per cent). Furthermore, the animal products index registered an increase of 3.5 per cent on account of higher producer prices fetched for eggs (+24.7 per cent).
The input price index for agriculture went up by 3.7 per cent from 139.34 in the second quarter last year to 144.45 in the comparable quarter this year.
The goods and services index, which records movements in running costs, registered an increase of 3.8 per cent over the comparative period last year. This increase was attributed to higher prices of motor fuels (+6.3 per cent) and animal feeding stuffs (+5.4 per cent). In contrast, prices for veterinary services declined by 4.7 per cent.
The machinery and investment index increased by 2.2 per cent over the corresponding period last year on account of higher prices paid for materials (+3.1 per cent) and buildings (+1.4 per cent), NSO said.