After school supplies, which saw their prices skyrocket for this 2022/2023 return to school, here comes the turn of consumer products, vegetables and fruits. Already greatly weakened by the successive increases of recent years, the purchasing power of households is therefore preparing to suffer a new drain… That too much perhaps?
Indeed, prices in convenience stores (food products, hygiene and cleaning products) have risen by 20%, 30%, or even 40%. Same for fruits and vegetables. Even seasonal ones (tomatoes, peppers, apples, figs, etc.) sell for indecent prices.
Fruits, vegetables, starchy foods… times are tough for small purses!
Let’s start with the essentials, fruits, green vegetables and starchy foods (lentils, beans, rice, etc.), the products that constitute the basic diet of Algerians.
On the vegetable side first, without reaching “craze”, the prices of the latter remained quite high for the period. Thus, although in season, courgettes are sold at 85 DA/kg, tomatoes at 110 DA/kg, peppers at 180 DA/kg and green beans at 190 DA/kg. As for the potato, king vegetable, its price is around 70 DA/kg. Eggs, the main sources of protein for the majority of our fellow citizens, cost 18 DA per unit and 500 DA per platter.
Regarding fruits, the situation is “hotter”. Apart from the white date grape that the consumer can afford from 140 DA per kilogram, the other fruits are almost unaffordable. Thus, the apple is worth 400 DA/kg, the fig, 450 DA/kg and the banana, 400 DA/kg. The long period of drought and the last fires which ravaged several orchards certainly have something to do with it.
Let us now move on to what once constituted the “subsistence of the poor”, pulses. Having doubled in the past two years, their prices continue to rise. In recent days, they have still experienced an increase of 35 DA. Thus, the kilo of lentils now costs 290 DA, that of white beans, 240 DA and the kilo of chickpeas, 360 DA. Parboiled rice is sold at 180 DA/kg and basmati, 390 DA/kg.
Moreover, the rise in the world price of PET has caused the price of mineral water packs to rise. That of the Ifri, Saïda and Guedila brands went from 200 to 210 DA (+10 DA). For the Nestlé and Lala Khedidja brands, it reaches 230 DA.
Prices are soaring in supermarkets too
Consumer products are also experiencing significant increases of 10 DA, 20 DA… sometimes 60 DA. Some have even doubled in price.
For example, the can of canned tomatoes (500 g) went from 110 DA to 130 DA (+20 DA); margarine, from 190 to 200 DA (+10 DA), the packet of coffee (250 g), from 160 DA to 210 DA (+50 DA); the jar of jam (500 g), from 125 DA to 150 DA (+25 DA); the package of Candia powdered milk (500 g), from 540 DA to 590 DA (+50 DA); the box of cheese in portions, from 190 DA to 210 DA (+20 DA) and the box of camembert, from 310 to 340 DA (+30 DA). That done, just for these everyday products, an accumulation of 200 DA.
As for flour, its price has almost doubled. From 60 DA per kilogram, it rose to 80 DA. Ditto for the pasta which goes from 55 to 100 DA. The traditional couscous is now sold for around 200 DA/kg against 150 DA previously (+50 DA). In addition, the price of the package of rice powder has increased by 10 DA to reach 60 DA and that of baker’s yeast, by 50 DA, to cost 150 DA.
With regard to edible oil, despite Cevital’s denial of the existence of a crisis affecting the product, it remains untraceable in several shops.
These increases do not spare hygiene and cleaning products. Thus, the classic packet of washing powder (350 g) now costs 85 DA instead of 70. The price of dishwashing liquid has literally exploded to reach 190 DA (previously 110 DA).