Buying basic food products like bread, milk or pasta could soon hit people’s wallets harder, as the Ukraine crisis causes disruption in supply chains and rising energy bills.
It comes after inflation in Spain accelerated in February to its fastest pace in nearly 33 years. This acceleration has already driven up the price of food, beverages, fuel and energy.
Here are the products that are likely to see a price rise in the coming weeks:
1. Wheat products like bread and pasta
Russia and Ukraine are two of the world’s top wheat exporters. When Russian forces invaded Ukraine, global chain supply was put at risk and the price of wheat jumped to its highest levels since 2012.
As much as 65 percent of the wheat imported to Spain comes from Ukraine. The price of wheat had already gone up 25 per cent in the past few months, and in the past two weeks, it has gone up by 10 percent, according to Antena 3 news.
Russia is one of the biggest energy producers in the world, and oil prices have surged since the beginning of the war in Ukraine, despite measures aimed at calming markets.
Brent crude – the international benchmark for oil prices – hit $113 a barrel this week, bringing it to the highest level since June 2014.
Petrol and diesel prices had already skyrocketed in recent weeks. In early February, petrol reached a record high €1,53/litre.
It has since continued to rise to €1,60/litre, while diesel is currently at €1,49/litre.
The EU is the largest importer of natural gas in the world, with the largest share coming from Russia (41 percent).
The price of gas has already gone up by 60 per cent in the past few days. In Spain, it reached historic highs at €195/MWh.
The price of electricity has gone up 16.8 per cent due to the crisis in Ukraine.
The Spanish government has said that prices are expected to continue to rise, but there is no current threat to gas supplies, as Russia is not one of the country’s main suppliers.
4. Sunflower oil
Ukraine provides Spain with a lot of sunflower oil. Around 63 percent of the sunflower imported to Spain comes from Ukraine.
This may not seem like the most essential product, but a lot of other food products contain sunflower oil.
The fuel price increase will have an overall impact on the price of all products and commodities, resulting in construction costs for new buildings also rising.
Every year, landlords are allowed to increase the price of rent according to inflation, which means renting could also become more expensive.
6. Meat, milk, eggs and other animal products
Russia is the world’s main producer of grain crops, above the US and Canada. Grain is used to make animal feed, so an increase in prices could indirectly affect animal products like ham, eggs and milk.
“In ten days, the price of raw materials, like wheat and corn, has gone up between 30 and 60 percent,” Jorge De Saja, director of Cesfac (Spain’s Confederation of Animal Food Producers) told Business Insider.
Practically half of all maize imports to Spain are, or were, from Ukraine.