Price of bread spikes in Georgia
The retail price of bread in stores throughout Georgia increased by 5-10 tetri today.
The cheapest white bread, which costs 80 tetri (about 30 cents), now stands at 90 tetri (34 cents). Other types of bread are more expensive as well and cost between 1.10 and 1.20 GEL.
The BusinessPressNews agency writes that the reason for the rise in price is an increase in the cost of flour and fuel.
The chairman of the Association of Agricultural Products, Malkhaz Dolidze, says that since the summer, the price of one unit of flour has increased by 32 per cent and amounts to between 47 and 50 lari, whereas in August, one unit cost between 33 and 35 lari. Therefore it is impossible to retain the previous bread price, he says.
A rise in the price of fuel, and thus transportation, further spiked the cost of bread. By law, bread must be packaged in paper bags, which also increases its cost.
Individuals involved in the country’s bread industry told Rustavi-2 that the price of bread should have gone up earlier, but because of the presidential elections, the authorities artificially maintained the previous price.
The second round of presidential elections in Georgia took place on 28 November. Pro-governmental candidate Salome Zourabichvili will become the fifth president of Georgia, with her inauguration ceremony taking place on 16 December in Telavi.
Ipkli, one of the largest bread-producing companies in the country, confirms that prices have risen by as much as 10 tetri. Company employees say the rise in the price of grain is a global trend.
“Over the past few months, the cost of grain, the cost of flour required for baking bread, has increased markedly in many countries. The changes have also affected Georgian manufacturers,” the company said.
Ipkli says it was able to keep prices low the last few months thanks to its flour reserves and the mobilisation of domestic resources. However, the latest rise in grain and flour prices has forced the company to reconsider its pricing policy. Manufacturers do not exclude the possibility of a further rise in prices for bread products.
Has bread become more expensive in other countries in the region?
Bread prices have not changed in neighboring states.
White factory bread in Azerbaijan costs 45 qepik (24 cents). In Armenia, according to an already long-standing tradition of having the most expensive bread in the region.