Chart of the Day: Fruit Prices Spike in China on ‘Extreme Weather’
“I spent two-thirds of the money I made today on these,” an internet user wrote online while posting a photo of a handful of strawberries and cherries that she had bought. “When can I have fruit freedom?”
The phrase “fruit freedom” — or the ability to buy as much fruit as one wants — became a buzzword in China’s online lexicon following a surge in fruit prices over the last month or so.
The average price of a basket of seven fruits surged on Friday to its highest in nearly five years, reaching 7.59 yuan ($1.10) per kilogram, up 23.33% from the previous month and 33.4% from the same day in 2018, according to data (link in Chinese) released by China’s Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs.
Of all the fruit monitored by the government, the price of Fuji apples has risen the fastest. Last week, the price of the popular apple jumped 49% from the same period a year earlier to 8.99 yuan per kilogram, according to government data. The surging price of the apple (link in Chinese), a consumer favorite in China, may have affected the prices of other fruits in the market, said Yang Ouwen, an analyst from Chuancai Securities.
A National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) spokesperson said fruit prices were rising due to extreme weather, but did not elaborate.
Rising fruit prices contributed only a little to the latest increase in China’s consumer price index, as the pickup in consumer inflation was mainly driven by a faster rise in pork prices, according to the NBS.
Contact reporter Gao Baiyu (email@example.com)
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