In the official price index for April, which surprised with an increase of 8.4%, food exceeded that average by registering a rise of 10.1%. This dynamic seems to be maintaining so far in May: according to private surveys, the item comes with increases of the order of 8% and 9% monthly.
According to the Supermarket Price Monitor of the Center for Economic and Social Studies Scalabrini Ortiz (CESO), the increase was 2.1% in the last week measured (until May 22) and the monthly variation reached an increase of 6.6%. Of course, some products accumulate monthly variations above that average. This is the case of processed meals (22.4%), dry pasta (9.2%), sauces (12.1%) and cheeses with increases of 6.9%.
The survey corresponding to the third week of the month of the consultancy Eco Go, had a variation of 2.6% of food prices with respect to the previous week. With this data and considering a projection of weekly variation of 1.8% for the last week of the month,the inflation of food consumed at home in May would climb to 9.0% monthly.
As explained by the consultant: "If we also consider the evolution of food consumed outside the home (10.6%), food inflation would reach 9.3%."
A similar level of increases was detected by the LCG consultancy, which measures virtual prices in supermarkets weekly. "The food and beverage index presented a monthly inflation of 8.6% average in the last 4 weeks and 8% end to end in the same period. So far this month it has accumulated 6.1% inflation," the consultant said in its latest report.
According to this survey, four categories were above the weekly average. Meanwhile, the Meat item was below, but explained 28% of the total weekly increase. Fruits showed a decrease of 1.7% weekly.
According to LCG information, the increases in the third week of the month were concentrated in a smaller number of products, but were more relevant than the previous week.
For all measurements, prices on the shelves increased the most during the second week of the month. In the case of LCG, in that period, the indicator rose to 3.6% in one week, and then slowed to 1.3% in the following week.
For the CESO, the rise of 2.1% in the third week of the month, implied a certain slowdown compared to the second week but set a very high floor for only seven days.
Although food has an important weight in the consumer price index, especially among those with lower incomes, it represents only one of the items that contribute fuel to the fire of inflation.
In this sense, this month must also compute strong increases in regulated prices such as prepaid (3.43% for those who charge less than six minimum wages and 4.76% for the rest of the users), tolls in AMBA (between 40% and 50%), fuels (4%), taxis (20%), buses and trains (7.7%, indexed to March inflation), subway and Premetro (15.5%), domestic service (7%), private schools (3.35%), cigarettes (10.1%), electricity rates (27% on average) and gas (25%), among others, "according to CESO.