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Government of Argentina: Beef is too expensive, skip it

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Staff writer ▼ | January 29, 2016
Argentina beef
Meat in Argentina   Price of beef had not declined in recent weeks

President Mauricio Macri's administration has a solution for consumers to deal with the increasing prices of beef: skip it.

The government said there was no economic reason to explain why the price of beef had not declined in recent weeks. Prices of beef sharply rose after Macri's administration eliminated export duties.

The more attractive exchange rate and the lower taxes led beef producers to prefer to sell the good abroad rather than in the domestic market. Prices rose as a result.

“Consumers need to become aware that the price of beef is too high. They should stop eating beef if they have to. The prices of live cattle have dropped but the same hasn't happened in supermarkets, that's where the large part of the surcharge is located,” Agriculture Minister Ricardo Buryaile said.

Buryaile said the government will use the consumer protection law to control “abuses” on beef prices and added sanctions will be applied against those guilty of “disproportionate increases” or have a dominant market position and consequently influence the prices.

“We want to maintain the consumer's purchasing power so we'll work with supermarkets to achieve that. Whoever has an abusive position on the market might be fined or shut down. Butchers account for 60 percent of the sales but it's hard to control them and they keep increasing prices.”

Asked about authorizing beef imports as a solution to lower prices, Buryaile said all import requests will be authorized, claming the government has to make sure there's enough stock in the domestic market.


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