This is how the price of tortillas has increased throughout Mexico in the last 10 years
(CNN Spanish) — Tortillas are one of the most typical foods in Mexico. With them you can make many foods, from tacos to chilaquiles. And just because they are so essential in the Mexican diet, the increase in their price in recent months is of great importance and concern for families in the country.
As a first approach, let’s look at the price increase in 2022.
Recent increase in the price of tortillas
According to the National Market Information and Integration System (SNIIM) of the Ministry of Economy, on January 3 of this year, a kilogram of tortillas had an average cost at the national level of 18.72 Mexican pesos.
However, according to the most recent monitoring of the SNIIM, which was on Wednesday, August 10, a kilo of tortillas cost an average of 20.99 pesos nationwide.
The foregoing indicates that, in 2022 alone, the kilo of tortillas in Mexico has suffered an increase of just over 12% in tortilla shops (which are the establishments where this food is typically purchased, although it can also be found in self-service stores ).
Reasons for the increase
The president of Mexico, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, has spoken about this issue in recent months. For example, in Maypointed out that he was concerned about the increase in the cost of tortillas, and urged “that it be considered that raw materials are increasing, but that tortilla shops not abuse” regarding the prices offered to the public.
August 11López Obrador once again emphasized the increase in the price of tortillas due to the rise in the cost of raw materials such as corn, but pointed out that for now a subsidy will not be applied to lower said price.
“The tortilla is very important for food (…). We are taking care that the price does not increase. What we do not want is to distribute subsidies left and right, and that this subsidy does not reach the consumer, but remains in the hands of intermediaries, we have to be careful about that, but we are going to continue trying not to increase the price of tortillas (with measures such as guaranteed prices for corn for producers),” he said at a press conference.
Likewise, various national organizations have mentioned that the increase in prices is due to a phenomenon of several factors, ranging from increases in the price of grains due to the war in ukraineto the increase in steel costs due to low production in China (essential material to build the machines that make tortillas), such as said Homero Lopezpresident of the National Tortilla Council, to the Mexican media outlet El Financiero.
López Obrador added this Thursday that more information would be given on Monday, August 15, in order to understand all the factors surrounding the increases in the price of this food.
How much has the price of tortillas increased in the last 10 years?
The president of Mexico further indicated that, despite the current price increase, today you can buy more kilos of tortillas with the minimum wage that is in force at the moment and that has increased in your government.
However, it is necessary to see the increase compared to a longer time, because that is where we can see that the price of a kilogram of tortillas has not only risen, but that this increase even exceeds the accumulated inflation.
What does this mean? Let’s go by parts:
- On August 10, 2012, the average price of a kilo of tortillas nationwide was 12.27 pesos.
- As we said before, the price was 20.99 pesos on August 10, 2022.
- Therefore, in a period of 10 years, the price for a kilogram of tortillas has increased 71%.
- But we have to consider that there is a margin of inflation. Remember that inflation indicates how much the prices of goods and services have risen in a given time.
- According to the inflation calculator inegiprices in general in Mexico have risen 55.45% in the last 10 years (from August 2012 to July 2022, latest data available).
- In a few words: tortillas have risen in price (like all products in the country), but they have done so more than normal, as we can see with the inflation calculator.
- What the president of Mexico pointed out is correct: with the current minimum wage you can buy more kilos of tortillas than before, but the increase in the price of this food has been more than it should be in the face of accumulated inflation since August 2012.