Against a deflationary environment of austerity-driven wage and pension cuts combined with rising unemployment; food, commodity, and fuel prices continue to surge in Greece. The government has taken an unusual step – allowing the sale of expired food at lower prices. As Voz Populi reports, this act means the government has ‘virtually admitted their inability to control prices” as the worst aspects of stagflation crush the Hellenic Republic. The regulation (allowing from one-week to one-month extensions of foods for sale post their eat-before-this-day-or-you’ll-get-Salmonella date) has existed for many years, according to a ministerial decree and this action merely states that these foods must be sold at a lower price. Meat and dairy is excluded but this move is described as “an immoral act” as few believe prices will actually be reduced – since that is at the discretion of the merchant. As the National Food Agency notes: “This is also a moral dilemma, to divide consumers into two groups: those who can afford basic food and those who, because of poverty, are forced to resort to dubious quality food.” We presume this will also reduce the drag on pension and healthcare costs as death rates will rise?
Via Voz Populi: (Google Translated)
Greece will allow the sale of expired food at a price lower than the original, in a move that the government has not been able to justify but consumer groups have interpreted as evidence of their inability to stop the escalating cost of commodities. A ministerial decree just reviving an old regulation that authorizes supermarkets and grocery stores to sell food once the expiration date, Efe reported. “This regulation has existed for many years. And it is something that is allowed in the rest Europe. All I did was point out that these products must be sold at low prices. do not understand what is causing so much noise, “said Yorgos Moraitakis Efe, advisor to the Ministry of Development, Competition and Merchant Marine.
The regulations exclude meat and dairy from the list of perishables that can be sold and sets a ceiling dates you can continue marketing. Thus, foods in which the expiration date is indicated by the day and the month, may continue on the shelf for another week. In the event that the “best before” only month and year point, the sale may be extended for one month, and in the event that the date indicated year alone, the sale date may be extended by one quarter.
Though Moraitakis Efe declined to specify the reasons for this decision and merely noted that the legislation already existed, consumer groups and even government agencies have criticized the measure. “Virtually admit their inability to control prices,” Efe reported Tsiafutis Victor Consumers Association ‘Quality of Life’, one of the oldest in Greece.
In the Greece of the crisis, the wage and pension cuts and rising unemployment, food prices and commodities has not stopped rising. Between August 2011 and August 2012, the price of sugar shot up 15%, the eggs, 6.8% for butter by 3.2% and that of coffee, 5.9%, according to data from the Statistics Authority. “It is an immoral act,” criticized Tsiafutis. “Instead of taking initiatives to control prices, allow the sale of food past the expiration date.”
Moreover, from the National Food Agency gets even concerned that the measure serves to something. “It is doubtful that these foods are to be sold at low prices, because the price control mechanisms have failed,” said Yannis Mijas, president of this organization linked to the government. Indeed, the measure of how much states must be the initial price reduction, which is at the discretion of the merchant.
To Mijas, selling expired food is also a moral dilemma, to divide consumers into two groups: those who can afford basic food and those who, because of poverty, “are forced to resort to dubious quality food.”