As every month, the Argentine Confederation of Medium Enterprises (CAME) prepared a report from its Regional Economies sector oriented to the Origin and Destination Price Index (IPOD), according to which it was determined that in March the prices of Agrifood increased 3.7 times from the field (origin) to the shelf (destination). In other words, the “drought effect” began to be felt on the daily table of Argentine consumers, who paid $3.7 for every $1 that producers received. This accompanies the trend of the previous month, in which this difference was 3.1 points.

As they pointed out, “On average, the participation of the producer explained 28.3% of the final sale prices. The greatest participation was held by the producers of chicken (67.4%), while the lowest was for those of onion (6.3%)”.

The gap in fruit and vegetable products and in farmers

fruit and vegetable IPOD: From the field to the shelf, the prices of the 19 fruits and vegetables that make up the IPOD basket multiplied by 5.9 times in March, 51.2% more than in February 2023, an increase largely explained by products such as lettuce, round tomato, pepper, broccoli and chard.

Livestock IPOD: For the 5 livestock products and by-products that make up the IPOD basket, the consumer paid 2.9 times more than what the producer received, the same as the previous month.

Read more: March marked a new record for inflation in more than 20 years

Major and minor IPOD gaps for March

1. Products with the largest monthly IPOD gaps

The onion (15.9 times), the lemon (14.6), the pumpkin (10.6), the orange (6,5) and the tangerine (6.1), were the 5 products that presented the greatest difference between the prices of origin and destination.

The onion it was the product with the greatest gap between the producer and the consumer. Prices decreased at both ends of the chain: the producer (-84%) and the consumer (-18). The producers consulted reported that the drop originally responded to the decrease in exports to Brazil —due to an increase in the administrative cost corresponding to export documentation—, to which is added a drop in demand for the “Valencianita” variety compared to the “Calabrian”.

For his part, in the pumpkin A decrease in prices was also observed both at origin (-68%), due to a drop in demand —the “Cabutia” is requested more than the “Coquena”—, as well as at the destination (-13).

Regarding citrus, the lemon registered a monthly decrease of 61% in producer prices, explained by the excess supply, while in gondola the decrease was only 1%.

Another was the behavior of sweet citrus. The orangeOn the one hand, with a rise of 51% at destination and a monthly drop of 40% at origin, which responds to the fact that the previous price corresponded to the fruit that remained in cold storage —which is usually more expensive— and the current It is from the early harvest. On the other hand, the tangerine, which registered a 105% increase in producer prices, while in gondola the increase was 68%. The heat generated irreversible damage to the fruit, so the combination of drought and high temperatures in producing areas has generated a sharp drop in supply.

2. Products with lower monthly IPOD gaps

Among the products that presented the smallest difference between the price received by the producer and the one paid by the consumer, there are 2 products of animal origin and 3 horticultural products.

In the case of chicken (1.5 times), product with the lowest gap of the month, and the egg (1.9), they generally have integrated production systems, which means that all the actors in their respective value chains are part of the business risk. While eggs increased 33.7% at origin and 31% at destination, chicken prices rose 27.7% for producers and 21% for consumers.

In relation to the products of the fruit and vegetable basket, seriously damaged —mostly— by the incidence of high and prolonged temperatures in the main producing provinces, while the round tomato and the lettuce —in provinces such as Santa Fe, also damaged by the presence of thrips— increased their prices to producers (32.3% and 15.5%, respectively) and to consumers (30% and 26%), in the Red pepper a decrease of 53% at origin and 4% at destination was observed.