ATHENS – Already hit with astronomical hikes in utility bills, Greeks are facing a double blow with jumping food prices driven by inflation and supply chain shortages, many families facing choices between fuel and eating.
As generic and cheaper products are running out, there won’t be an alternative to buying more expensive goods in supermarkets as the costs will continue to go up because a series of increases decided by suppliers haven’t hit yet, said Kathimerini.
Even basic foods such as coffee and other necessities are seeing big hikes that could put them out of reach for the lowest income, with the Hellenic Statistical Authority (ELSTAT) finding that they spend 35.5 percent of their monthly income on food.
Out of the 60 food products that ELSTAT monitors for its consumer price index, some 44 showed price hikes, ranging from 0.49 percent to 21.45% for lamb and goat meat, both of which are plentiful in the country.
A series of products have seen considerable increases, ranging from bread, which is 3.71 percent more expensive than it was at the start of the year, to olive oil, which is now 17.92 percent higher than in January.
Other foodstuffs showing marked cost hikes include fresh vegetables, fruit, seafood, potatoes, milk and sugar and major chains are running out of their stocks of cheaper goods, which will bring even bigger price hikes.
Inflation in Greece reached a 10-year high in October, amounting to 3.4 percent, said ELSTAT earlier, mainly due to doubling of natural gas rates and hikes in fuel and food prices which will continue to soar for months.
The cost of food across the EU has jumped by 7.1 percent over the past year, almost double the rate of inflation (3.6 percent) in the 27-member bloc, the European Union’s statistics agency Eurostat said in June.