In the first quarter of 2023, compared to the same period of 2022, the average price of agricultural products in the EU as a whole increased significantly - the selected basket of products rose by 17%. In Bulgaria, growth is almost 5 percent, BTA reported.

Agricultural prices continued to rise strongly in the first quarter of 2023, but the increase was the slowest pace since the start of Russian aggression against Ukraine. This is according to data from the European statistical office Eurostat, published on its website.

However, this represents a lower rate of increase than the rate of change of the previous three-month period. For the fourth quarter of 2022, compared to the same quarter of 2021, prices in the EU jumped by 26% and in Bulgaria by over 17%.

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Within the basket of products, there were particularly strong increases in the prices of eggs (by 60 per cent on average in the EU), rice (51 per cent), olives and pork (both by 49 per cent). The overall increase in egg prices in the EU reflects not only the shortage of feed grain and reduced grain exports from Ukraine, but also the outbreak of bird flu in Belgium and the Netherlands.

The production of agricultural produce is associated with significant costs, Eurostat notes. Farmers must make purchases of goods and services to be used as inputs in the production process. Although output prices continued to rise between the first quarter of 2022 and the corresponding quarter of 2023, so did the average price of goods and services currently consumed in agriculture (i.e. non-investment related inputs) in the EU as a whole. They increased by 11 per cent for the same basket of raw materials.