The euro exchange rate broke a new record – 90 rubles; the dollar exchange rate reached 82 rubles, such a position was previously registered in 1998. The depreciation of the ruble hits Russian citizens’ pockets heavily, leading to a growth in prices. Meanwhile, Irina Hecht, Deputy Chairwoman of the Federation Council Committee on Agrarian and Food Policy and Environmental Management, says that the concepts of "a market basket" and "a food basket" are different things.
“The market basket is a more general concept. It is understandable that food products occupy about 50% of its composition. This, by the way, is typical only for our country. In developing countries, food products make up only about 20-25% of the composition of the market basket. In other words, Russians spend much more on food in the market basket. The second group of products is clothing, shoes, medicines, and the third group of products is required payments, including communal payments.”
The composition of the market basket is determined every five years. “Kazakhstan and Belarus, knowing that modern realities have changed, including economic ones, will have to change the composition of their market basket this year. This is right. Russia focuses most of its attention on food products. The main group consists of potatoes, vegetables, fruits, milk, meat and fish. Most of it is potatoes, which is the main part of the market basket. Next are bakery products, then vegetables. There is a small amount of fruits. And if we take the daily standards, then I'll just tell you that bread is 0.3 kg, it is enough, that is, it is almost a loaf of bread. Potatoes are also almost 300 g, fresh fruits – 16 g. Milk and derivatives – 0.8. But we must understand that it is milk, and cheese, and butter, and fats. Eggs are calculated at 0.5 per day, meat is 0.16 kg and fish is 50g,” Gekht says. According to her, it is necessary to revise the market basket in the direction of its balance, increase the proportion of meat, fish, vegetables and fruit.
The growth of the market basket occurred in different ways for different groups of the population. “For the working population, the cost of the basket has increased by 200 rubles, for children – 150 rubles, and the largest increase occurred for pensioners – 400 rubles. Inflation processes and the rise of dollar, the fall in oil prices, will definitely affect the economic processes. But the peak of the rises in prices happened in December 2014, when the biggest changes occurred. The current rise in food prices will be within the level of inflation, since in any case the replacement of many products with domestic products has already occurred. We have adapted to life in conditions of sanctions, which has led to a decrease in exports of certain goods,” Gekht believes.