CRISIL Report Shows 24% Price Rise In August, Tomatoes To Blame

The cost of living in most countries is on the rise and the state of affairs for India is no different. In the latest Roti Rice Rate report from the  Credit Rating Information Services of India Limited (CRISIL), they noted a 24 per cent jump in the price of a vegetarian thali and a 13 per cent rise in a non-vegetarian thali for the average Indian household from the same time last year.

As per the report, “The average cost of a thali is calculated based on input prices prevailing in north, south, east, and west India. The monthly change reflects the impact on the common man’s expenditure. The data also reveals the ingredients (cereals, pulses, broiler, vegetables, spices, edible oil, cooking gas) driving changes in the cost of a thali.” It paints an accurate reflection of the food status country-wide.

Unsurprisingly to anyone who’s had to buy vegetables in the last few months, the prices of tomatoes were the main contributor to the significant price rise in August. For the third month in a row since April, the cost rose sequentially and according to the report, 21% of the cost rise can be attributed solely to the prices of tomatoes which rose 233% to Rs 110/kg in July from Rs 33/kg in June.

Although tomatoes were the main culprit, there were a few more background factors contributing to the spike including the rise in costs for staples like chillies and cumin, which rose 69% and 16% on-month, respectively, in July, but as relatively minor additions to cost they weren’t as significant as the 16% and 9% on-month increase of onions and potatoes respectively.

Meanwhile, on the side of the decline, non-vegetarian thalis rose at a slower pace as the price of broilers which comprise more than 50% of the cost, likely declined 3-5% on-month in July. CRISIL predicts a lull in the average based on the declining tomato prices during the last week of August where tomato's retail price has halved on-month to Rs 51 per kg as well as a decrease in LPG Gas cylinders. This will spell a welcome relief for households across the country and a softening of the 15-month high of 7.44 per cent in July.