Brace for another bread price hike

PRICES of basic commodities, among other crucial daily requirements like fuel, have continued to skyrocket, with the Grain Millers’ Association of Zimbabwe (GMAZ) warning that the cost of bread is likely to go up again from the current $1,10 if government does not urgently respond positively to their wheat import subsidy request.

By NQOBANI NDLOVU

Following President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s re-election on July 30, which the opposition MDC Alliance is challenging, prices of basic commodities have continued to skyrocket amid indications that the hikes are in response to the instability on the parallel foreign currency market.

While government insists that the bond note, which was introduced as a stop-gap measure following the disappearance of United States dollars on the formal market, has the same value with the greenback, on the streets, it is pegged at between $180 and $190 against US$100 on the informal market.

GMAZ this week warned of another bread price hike owing to the low wheat supply, with chairperson Tafadzwa Musarara on Thursday saying this could only be averted if government accedes to their request for a subsidy.

“We have requested for a subsidy of $50 per tonne from government and for the bakers to get $7 million per month for them to buy other ingredients other than flour so that the bread price comes down to $1. We are still waiting for a response. We submitted our request just before the new Cabinet was appointed,” Musarara told NewsDay Weekender.

The price of bread recently went up to $1,10 due to the low supply of wheat, a situation further compounded by high operational costs and foreign currency shortages to purchase other raw materials.

Bakers argue the cost of production of bread keeps going up, leaving them with no choice, but to increase its price.

Reports say the price of wheat has in the past 90 days increased by about 10% from $375 per metric tonne to $415.

Wheat and fuel are products that are on the priority list of the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe in terms of allocation of foreign currency.

Musarara said the $1,10 bread price was untenable and would result in the product disappearing from shop shelves unless the price is further increased or government intervenes.

“And while we are waiting for that intervention to happen, we are now facing two tough choices: one, if we maintain the prices, bread will not be available, and two, if we increase the prices, the product will be available and we felt that increasing prices is a better devil (because) at least the product is available while other interventions happen,” Musarara said.

Nearly the prices of all basic commodities such as mealie-meal, meat, soap, toiletries, rice, sugar and vegetables are spiralling out of control due to a currency crisis fuelled by foreign currency shortages.

9 Comments

  1. why are they handling bread with their bare hands??

    1. Your Name (required):Anonymous

      Hahaha, was thinking the same myself :-). Especially in this time we’re in, they should have at least worn plastics on their hands for the pic. Someone needs to make noise about this.

  2. A black person can not run a country. European white politicians acting as advisors are needed as soon as possible to give black leadership a thorough lesson on how to run a govt and country.

    1. your crazy can l run your familly give me your wife is you have one coz you can not take care of her

  3. Your Name (required):Special Black

    People with this type of thinking are dangerous world over. Every race can run a country depending on your leadership qualities. Now if you are white, thinking that way, can you treat all people equal as a leader? About hiking of basic commodities, the gvt and private players need to invest heavily in irrigation and all agric activities. Serious farmers should be seen doing the job while lazy farmers are re-allocated small pieces of land they can afford. Start from empress turn off to Bora murehwa etc.

  4. Zimbabwe’s bread is the most expensive in the world. If we can’t produce it at a reasonable price just import the finished product ie bread from South Africa. Period. these GMAZ guys they just need cash to put on the black market. Another period.

  5. Your Name (required):Special Black

    How much is a loaf of bread in South Africa, transport? Remember bread is perishable. Gentlemen lets not be negative all the time Zimbabwe is ours and you will remain Zimbabwean.If your country has problems lets find ways to make it admirable. We cannot admire countries that were built by citizens of those countries. Be yourselves and masters of your destiny.

  6. blind leading blind

    the blind writer lead by even blinder comments

  7. KidZone Grade Three

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