Caixin
May 17, 2019 06:57 PM
DAILY CHART

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.

 

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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 (baiyugao@caixin.com)

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