Sunday, January 29

Meat: due to the increase, inflation in food would exceed 3%

Meanwhile, at Eco Go, led by economist Marina Dal Poggetto, monthly food inflation was 3.9%. Although the survey reaches the first four weeks of the month, and the fifth remains, they estimate a weekly variation of 0.7%. The monthly food data “incorporates the strong drag from November (1.8%)”, they consider in the consultancy.

3.9% of food is above the average, given that Eco Go projects that the general level will be 3.3%. The inflation data for December will be known on January 13, according to INDEC. The last official data was 2.5% in November, and accumulates 45.4% in the first 11 months. The year would end at 51.1%, according to the central bank’s REM.

Meats were the product consumed at home that increased the most during the month, climbing an average of 10.5%, according to Eco Go. Beef rose much more than the average (14.4%), followed by other red 5% and poultry 4.4%. Another of the products that had strong increases in the month were oils and fats, which increased 6.3%.

Meanwhile, the CESO led by Andrés Asiain projects a 2.6% inflation in food in December, with fresh food registering the highest increases: 3.2%. The most important variations were dairy 5.2%, meat 4.8% and cheese 4%. It stands out that meats “continues to rise above the average”, but that at the weekly level “had its first negative variation (-0.1%) after 24 weeks”. During the last week the popular price agreement for meat was registered, which was in force for 6 days in supermarkets.

Although the Ministry of Internal Trade, headed by Roberto Feletti, wanted the Government to take more measures with respect to the price of meat, such as raising withholdings, the Ministry of Agriculture decided to advance in a greater supply in the internal market, and in maintaining export cuts prohibited. This Friday, 12/31, the deadline for the Government to make changes in withholdings without going through Congress ends.

Agreements in progress

In its report, the CESO claims “the need to implement measures that decouple costs in pesos at the beginning of the chain from international prices in dollars, particularly for corn and wheat.” The Secretary of Commerce carries out daily meetings with food companies, to get out of the 90-day price freeze, and relaunch Care Prices, with staggered increases, and double the number of products in the basket, with more than 1,300.

At the same time, Feletti heads together with Julián Domínguez a plan to create cross-subsidies within the private sector for wheat and corn. They would be trusts like the one that exists for oil, in which exporting companies subsidize the prices of companies that have sales to the domestic market.

For meat, the sector generally rejects mechanisms such as a trust. “There are 200,000 livestock producers, 360 meat processing plants, 4,000 slaughtering operators and 80,000 butcher shops, it is impossible,” Daniel Urcía, president of the Federation of Meat Processing Industries (Fifra), told this newspaper. An alternative that they brought from Fifra is the tax cut. For Miguel Schiaritti, president of the Chamber of Commerce of meats (Ciccra), the solution is to “increase livestock production.”

In this sense, Leonardo Rafael, president of the Matarifes Chamber, added: “If politics wants quick solutions, the quick effect ends up being detrimental. The livestock plan seems barbarous to me, but the policy has to respect it, because the measures for the cattle production cycles transcend a period of government ”.