Serbian farmers have been filling their silos and warehouses for years, delaying the sale of goods due to low purchase prices. This year, it seems, unlike the previous ones, they will manage to fill their pockets as well.
The price of wheat, corn, sunflower and soybeans started to jump last fall. In one year, soybeans are more expensive by 103.57 percent, and corn by 72.78 percent, according to the data of the Product Exchange in Novi Sad.
Soybeans are now traded for about 94 dinars per kilogram (including VAT), which is the highest value ever achieved on the stock exchange in Novi Sad. Corn is sold for about 27 dinars, at the level of ten years ago.
Fear of hunger is one of the main reasons for the rise in prices
All changes in the prices of oilseeds and cereals, which are stock exchange products, on stock exchanges around the world, also affect the value of these goods in Serbia. Minor changes are more frequent, but textual disorders like this are not so common, experts say.
Agroeconomist Milan Prostran says for RTS that one of the main reasons for the increase in the price of cereals and oilseeds is the coronavirus pandemic.
“The pandemic has made Western and rich countries start stockpiling, they never knew what the risks of not having goods were, they are trying to save and refrain from placing and increasing reserves because their citizens have become scared,” Prostran explains.
He adds that the same situation has affected the entire market of raw materials, including precious metals and wood, which have become very attractive during the crisis.
The forecasts of world experts are that the trend of rising prices of cereals and oilseeds will not stop. Moreover, they are expected to continue to grow until the middle of 2022, Prostran points out.
Soybeans from Serbia are especially attractive for export, considering that they are not GMOs, so they are of better quality and more expensive than soybeans produced in the rest of the world, primarily in the countries of South America.
Should we be afraid that the price of bread will increase?
Due to the increase in the price of field crops, the increase in the price of basic foodstuffs is expected, ahead of all breads.
Agroeconomist Milan Prostran believes that we should not be afraid because we still have stocks of wheat. Also, as he says, the price of bread is “not to be played with” because it is a sensitive category, especially if viewed from the social aspect.
“I don’t think there will be a need to increase the price, and if that happens, the state can control that, when it comes to the price of type 500 flour, which must be found in the trade of bakeries by 30 percent. The state has stocks of wheat and can let go at a slightly lower price, “states Prostran.
Veljko Jovanović from the Serbian Chamber of Commerce also points out that there should be no fear that the price of bread will become more expensive.
“An increase in the price of wheat could be expected, but we do not expect dramatic consequences for other prices in the value chain,” Jovanovic points out.
According to him, the data show that we have sufficient quantities of corn, wheat, sunflower and soybeans for both export and domestic needs.
Oil will not get cheaper soon
When it comes to the price of oil, which has already risen in price, and is now sold on the shelves of stores in Serbia for 180-190 dinars, Jovanovic points out that this is a consequence of rising prices of all oils on a global level.
“Currently, the price of one liter of refined sunflower oil in the Republic of Serbia is lower than the price of crude sunflower oil in the region and the world, so that domestic producers protect the supply of the domestic packaging oil market from one liter to a new sunflower harvest. imbalances in the oil market “, points out Jovanović.
For now, he says, it is not expected that refined sunflower oil will become cheaper, because the fact that the price of raw materials is expected to jump in the next harvest also supports that.
The increase in the price of meat is almost certain
The increase in the price of corn could be additionally influenced by the fact that sowing is as much as 20 percent more expensive this year. This is the result of higher prices for mineral fertilizers and seeds.
When the price of corn increases, the price of pork is also expected to increase, considering that this cereal is one of the main ingredients in animal feed.
Agroeconomist Milan Prostran points out that because of all this, there will be a shift in the price of fresh meat.
“If a farmer fattens a pig with a concentrate in which corn of 24-27 dinars entered, there is no economy,” states Prostran.