The retail price of red caviar, known as brick and salmon eggs, has reached a record high in Russia since 2000, when it exceeded 5,000 rubles (60.37 euros) per kilo, making this traditional dish expensive for most Russian families as it is considered essential for the festive table, although the quantities of salmon caught have increased.
According to a report in the RBK newspaper, citing data from the Russian Statistical Service (Rostat), the average retail price of red caviar reached a record high, as it exceeded 5,000 rubles in October 2021, while from 2000 it increased by 7 , 4 times. In October 2000 the price of one kilo was 675.2 rubles (8.15 euros).
This increase may mean that the famous Russian sandwiches with butter and salmon, which is something similar to foie gras in France, could be missing during the holidays from the Russian table, which is being hit by inflation, especially in food.
Salmon fishing, most of which takes place in the remote Kamchatka Peninsula (in the Russian Far East), has actually increased by almost 30% since January, compared to the same period in 2020, according to the Federal Fisheries Service. the official TASS news agency.
Although the increase in the amount of salmon caught has led to a drop in salmon prices, RBK’s research, which cites market participants, speaks of “speculation” before the holidays as the market is concentrated in the hands of 10-15 producers in Russian Far East.
The executive director of the Union of Productive and Commercial Enterprises of the Fisheries Market, Alexander Fomin, told TASS that Russia does not have the conditions for a long-term increase in retail prices for red caviar, because the wholesale prices of salmon are also stable.
“There are no conditions for price increases. Wholesale prices are at the level of 170-180 rubles per kilo of salmon (2 -2.10 euros) and I do not think they will increase,” he said.
According to the president of the Russian Association of Fishing Entrepreneurs German Zverev, the selling price of a kilo of red caviar by fishermen fell from one year to another by about 15%, from 3,300 rubles to 2,800 rubles (from 39.84 to 33, 8 euros).
“Undoubtedly, there are increases throughout the chain, but I think prices are determined by the market. Quality caviar is more expensive. Unrestrained demand pushes prices up, but their fall is inevitable. There is a lot of caviar,” he said. Fomin, noting that “the market needs for this product are about 15,000 tons, but in fact have been produced based on the data 22-23,000 tons. That is much more than the market needs” and “supply increases demand”.
In October, inflation reached 8.1% year-on-year in Russia, the highest level since 2016. As elsewhere in the world, food prices have skyrocketed, a blow to a population often living on the edge. , with minimal savings.