By: Nghiinomenwa Erastus
Food prices are corroding the purchasing power of the dollar more than any other goods in the consumer goods, Namibia Statistics Agency revealed.
According to the three months data (April-to-June 2021), food prices inflation continues to soar above other commodities in the consumer price index CPI basket.
The findings are included in the Agriculture, Forestry, and Fishing Sector Statistical Bulletin of the second quarter, released by Namibia Statistics Agency (NSA) at the end of September.
Inflation captures the overall changes in goods and services prices over time, it also measures the purchasing power of a dollar in this case.
The NSA team said the annual inflationary increase on food is owed to soaring prices of meat (16,3%), ‘oils and fat’ (12,6%) fruit (8,3%), vegetable (6,5%), and ‘bread and cereals’ recording a 4% price increase.
During the quarter under review, meat items registered the highest change in prices, with prices increasing by 16,3%.
The rise in meat prices was observed in all types of meat with chicken, bird’s meat recording the highest inflation of 24,4%, whereas ‘offal and meat waste’ (19,4%).
Liver and kidneys’ prices went up by 18,8% recording the third-highest price increases.
As the country continued producing more weaners for export, the beef prices kept going up at a constant rate of 15,6% in the review quarter, the same rate recorded in the corresponding quarter of 2020.
Bread and cereals were 4% more expensive during the period under review compared to 2020Q2.
Within this class, rice recorded the highest inflation of 16,8% followed by 8,1% recorded in biscuits, rusks, and bread (7,6 %).
Mahangu meal, maize meal, and mealie rice on the other hand registered a deflation (negative price growth) of 0,9%, 1,2%, and 0,7%, respectively
The national self-sufficiency for grains stood at 40 during 2021Q2.
“This implies that only 40 percent of the total local demand was met by the local supply,” the report indicated.
The local demand for cereal continues to increase as it is consumed routinely and is the dominant portion of a standard diet of many Namibians.
However, the domestic supply declined due to low rainfall over the years and pests’ outbreaks.
“This resulted in a shortage in the domestic market which triggered imports to cover the shortfall hence, Namibia is a net importer of cereal crops,” the report highlighted.
On aggregate, the local production for controlled cereal crops stood at 38,833 tons during the quarter under review, when compared to 30,925 tons recorded in the corresponding quarter of 2020.
White maize production recorded 38,391 tons whereas Pearl millet registered 442 tons during the review.
No wheat production was reported in the second quarter.
On the vegetable side, their prices rose by 6,5% during the quarter under review as opposed to 6,3% recorded in 2020Q2.
Growth in prices for this category was mainly recorded for tomatoes (24,2%), cabbage (23%), and broccoli, cauliflower (18%).
However, onions, carrots, and ‘green pepper/paprika’ registered declines in prices of 21,9%, 13,4% percent, and 12,5 percent, respectively. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org