Dairy At Glance
Prices of food, grocery likely to rise 10-20% more on rupee fall

KOLKATA: There seems to be no respite from rising food prices as traders, marketers and retailers expect prices to shoot up 10-20% over the next quarter due to multiple factors including depreciating rupee, rising international commodity prices and excessive rains destroying crops. 
Food and grocery prices have already increased some 20% in the last six months, according to retail chains, packaged food companies and commodity traders. With the steep fall in the rupee, which has lost almost 20% against the US dollar so far this year, increasing import costs and putting pressure on fuel prices, and heavy monsoon destroying crops in many parts of the country, traders, commodity wholesalers, packaged food companies and retailers give clear indication that inflation will continue in the coming months. 
Prices of edible oil, rice, milk and dairy products, vegetables, packaged food such as juices, butter and ice cream, and imported gourmet and exotic food are already on the rise. 
To deal with the rising pressure on their monthly food bill, consumers have already started to shift buying preferences to keep their monthly household budget intact, moving from one variant to another, say retailers and traders. 
"Consumers are not yet downgrading their purchases; however, shifting has been observed in certain cases where inflation has been steep to keep their monthly budget intact," Mohit Kampani, president and chief executive officer at food and grocery retail chain Spencer's Retail, says. For instance, he says, prices of groundnut oil have gone up 15%-20% in the last four months, forcing shoppers to shift to other variants such as soya and sunflower oil. In the South, consumers have shifted to lower price points of basmati rice due to 20% inflation in their favourite sona masoori rice. 
Consumers have cut the volume of vegetables they buy, Kampani says, adding vegetable sales in Spencer's outlets have fallen 10%-15% between April-May and July-August. 
Dev Raj, proprietor of Rajdhani Rice Trader in Delhi's Naya Bazar, says traders are more interested to export rice to overseas markets for better earnings. "This bullish sentiment in the export market has pushed up prices in the domestic market and may further go up," he said.

Rice prices have already increased 20% in the South in the last six months due to a surge in exports of basmati rice and opening up of exports of non-basmati varieties due to the steep fall of the rupee. Traders expect prices to rise another 5-10% for some varieties that are popular in international markets. 

Akshay Sadana

Akshay SadanAkshay Sadanaa

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Posted Date : 01/04/2015 Posted By : Admin