The Slovenia Times

Basic food products notably cheaper in second comparison


Ljubljana - A website enabling consumers to compare the retail prices of basic food products, which was launched on 19 September in a bid to discourage retailers from excessive price hikes, has produced a second round of price comparison. Now basic food products are cheaper in all six retailers included in the comparison.

In line with the comparison of the 15 basic foods conducted on 27 September, all the prices were lower than in the first round on 13 September and the differences between them are smaller.

The website tracks the prices of a kilo of white wheat flour, white bread and pasta, milk, liquid yoghurt, apples, potatoes, sunflower oil and white sugar, ten eggs, 250 grammes of butter, 300 grammes of cheese and half a kilo of beef and pork steaks and chicken fillets at retailer chains Mercator, Spar, Tuš, Engrotuš, Hofer, Lidl and Eurospin.

Hofer offers these products at the lowest total price of EUR 40.43, while Mercator's prices are the highest, totalling EUR 46.37.

While in the first comparison the difference between the cheapest and costliest basket was almost 11 euro, it is now six euro.

In the first round, the products were the cheapest in Eurospin, at a total of EUR 47.38, and the costliest in Tuš, at EUR 58.23.

After retailers voiced criticism that mistakes had been made in the first round of price tracking, they met with Agriculture Minister Irena Šinko earlier this week and agreed they would participate in the project, which they do now.

The website no longer compares the prices of Slovenian retailers to those in neighbouring Austria, Italy and Croatia. In the first comparison, the basic products were the cheapest in Croatia's Lidl (EUR 32.44) and the costliest in Austria's Billa (54.28).

In terms of product variety, Spar had the widest range of products on offer, selling 100 different products in the 15 selected categories.

According to the Agriculture Ministry, the second price comparison defined the categories of products in more detail. Consumers can also keep track of the movement of the price of a certain product at different retailers.

The ministry said next rounds of comparisons would be conducted in the presence of retailer's representatives but would not be announced beforehand.

The ministry plans to carry out with the project until the end of March 2023 and extend it if necessary or adjust it to the new circumstances. "Initial responses show there is great interest in the tracker and that consumers largely support it," the ministry said.


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