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CSO statistical release, 22 June 2016, 11am

Comparative Price Levels for Food, Beverages and Tobacco

2015

 Food and Non-Alcoholic BeveragesAlcoholic BeveragesTobacco
European Union 28100100100
European 38 (max)173250220
 SwitzerlandNorwayNorway
Ireland 119175189
European 38 (min)586125
 FYR of MacedoniaFYR of MacedoniaFYR of Macedonia

Price Level Indices for Food, Beverages and Tobacco across Europe in 2015

This release focuses primarily on the price levels of Food, Beverages and Tobacco across 38 European countries. The Price Level Indices shown in this release use European Union 28 as "base country" (EU28=100).  The data in this release are produced by the Eurostat-OECD Purchasing Power Parity (PPP) Programme.

The country groups included in the analysis are the 28 Member States of the European Union (EU), the three European Free Trade Association (EFTA) countries (Iceland, Norway and Switzerland), the five candidate countries (the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, Albania and Turkey), the potential candidate country (Bosnia and Herzegovina) and Kosovo1.

The Food, Beverages and Tobacco Survey was carried out in 2015 within the Eurostat-OECD Purchasing Power Parities (PPP) Programme.  Prices were collected for over 400 individual items covering the main broad categories including, Bread and cereals; Meat; Fish; Milk, Cheese and eggs; Oils and fats; Fruits, vegetables and potatoes;  Non-Alcoholic Beverages; Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco.  The full list of items is included in the Background Notes section of this release.

The results of the survey are expressed in Price Level Indices, which provide a comparison of countries’ price levels with respect to the EU28 average (100).  If the price level index is higher than 100, the country concerned is relatively more expensive compared to the EU28 average, while on the other hand, if the price level index is lower than 100, then the country is less expensive compared to the EU28 average. See Background Notes for further details.

The Table above summarises the main results with a particular focus on the Irish price levels.  As expected the 2015 results show significant differences in price levels for Food, Beverages and Tobacco across the 38 European countries. 

For the overall category Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages Switzerland was the most expensive country, with prices on average 73% above the EU28 average, while the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia was the least expensive, 42% below the EU28 average.  The most expensive country was three times more expensive than the least expensive country.  Irish prices were 19% above the EU28 average and roughly 14% above the Eurozone 19 (104) average.

The picture with respect to the price level for Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco was slightly different. In both cases the gap between the most expensive and the least expensive country was significantly wider, Tobacco prices showing the greatest variation across the countries.

The results show that Norway was the most expensive country for Alcoholic Beverages, prices were 150% above the EU28 average. The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia was the least expensive country 39% below the EU28 average.  For Alcoholic Beverages the most expensive country was roughly 4 times more expensive than the least expensive country.   The price level for Alcoholic Beverages in Ireland was 75% above the EU average and approximately 90% above the Eurozone 19 average (92).

Norway had the highest price level for Tobacco, prices were 120% above the EU28 average. The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia was the least expensive, 75% below the EU28 average.  For Tobacco the most expensive country was approximately 9 times more expensive than the least expensive country. The Irish price level index for Tobacco was 89% above the EU28 average and roughly twice the Eurozone 19 average (96).

Tables 1 and 2 below show  the price levels for  Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages by country and the price levels for the main Food subcategories i.e. Bread & cereals; Meat; Fish; Milk, Cheese & eggs; Oils & fats and Fruits, vegetables and potatoes by country. Table 3 shows the price level indices for Alcohol by country while Table 4 shows the price level indices for Tobacco by country.  In each Table the Irish price levels are highlighted in green and the Eurozone 19 average in blue.

 

1 Kosovo under UNSCR 1244/99. 

Table 1: Price Level Indices for Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages 2015 (EU28=100)
NameFood and Non-Alcoholic BeveragesFoodNon-Alcoholic Beverages
Switzerland 173179125
Norway159157180
Denmark                                            145142166
Iceland130132114
Sweden 124125112
Austria                                         120122107
Finland                                              119119124
Ireland                                              119118127
Luxembourg 116118106
United Kingdom 111110125
Italy 11011196
France                                                      10911194
Belgium                                                       108109102
Cyprus                                                        107107107
Malta104103117
Eurozone 1910410597
Germany       103104100
Greece                                                        103103108
Netherlands 989899
Slovenia 969786
Portugal 9493103
Spain929385
Croatia                                          919198
Turkey908990
Slovakia 8987106
Latvia 8986116
Estonia                                               8887105
Czech Republic                                     797889
Hungary                                                       797885
Lithuania 787698
Montenegro787790
Bosnia & Herzegovina 747380
Bulgaria                                                    706881
Kosovo*706982
Serbia 696974
Albania 686785
Romania 646372
Poland636178
Macedonia, Former Yugoslav Republic of 585863
*Kosovo under UNSCR 1244/99
Open in Excel: CPL2015TBL1 (XLS 34KB)

Price Level Indices for Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages

As outlined earlier the most expensive country for Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages was Switzerland while the least expensive was the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.  From Table 1 we can see that Ireland was ranked joint 7th most expensive along with Finland.  In both countries price levels were 19% above the EU28 average. The UK was ranked 9th most expensive with prices 11% above the EU28 average.

The Scandinavian countries together with Switzerland, Iceland, Austria and to a lesser extent Ireland and Luxembourg formed the most expensive group of countries for Food, with price levels ranging from 18% to 79% above the EU28 average. Finland, Ireland, and Luxembourg had very similar price levels i.e. 19%, 18% and 18% above the EU28 average respectively. This ranked Finland 7th most expensive with Ireland and Luxembourg joint 8th most expensive.

Comparing the price levels for Food across the Eurozone countries (Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia and Spain) Table 1 shows that Austria was the most expensive country (22% above the EU28 average) while Lithuania was the least expensive country (24% below the EU28 average). Within the Eurozone Ireland and Luxembourg were ranked joint 3rd just behind Finland.

Price levels for the Non-Alcoholic Beverages were highest in Norway and Denmark 80% and 66% above the EU28 average respectively.  Ireland ranked 3rd most expensive and the UK was the 4th most expensive, 27% and 25% above the EU28 average respectively.  The least expensive countries for Non-Alcoholic Beverages were the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Romania, Serbia, Poland, Bosnia & Herzegovina and Bulgaria, where price levels ranged from 19% to 37% below the EU28 average.

When we look at the price levels for Non-Alcoholic Beverages across the Eurozone countries Ireland (27% above the EU28 average) was the most expensive country while Spain (15% below the EU28 average) was the least expensive.

 

Table 2: Price Level Indices for Food and the main subcategories 2015 (EU28=100)
NameFoodBread and cerealsMeatFishMilk, cheese and eggsOils and fatsFruits, vegetables and potatoes
Switzerland179162254177148182172
Norway157149157117175147150
Denmark142162137129127147133
Iceland132136139108139101130
Sweden125131131115116127137
Austria122136132125105124125
Finland11912512411011894127
Ireland118111106108128113136
Luxembourg118113131113122117114
Italy111116112110121101106
France11111212810892103116
United Kingdom11096112105118103116
Belgium10910811911011311299
Cyprus1071168811114011591
Eurozone 19105107109102101101106
Germany 10410111710991102111
Malta10310289109114124102
Greece1031148811313111683
Netherlands 9890111999391104
Slovenia971009610210011790
Spain931048589968495
Portugal9395789510110191
Croatia919477939210093
Turkey89717810512211486
Slovakia878873949612885
Estonia878979949010488
Latvia8683698210111588
Hungary787271898710776
Czech Republic787374103839873
Montenegro77716688817882
Lithuania767763738510377
Bosnia & Herzegovina73726672778272
Kosovo*69616470729172
Serbia69636084799267
Bulgaria685855648810566
Albania67615275938866
Romania63536071929049
Poland61615464657362
Macedonia, Former Yugoslav Republic of58555659716648
*Kosovo under UNSCR 1244/99
Open in Excel: CPL2015TBL2 (XLS 36KB)

Price Level Indices for Food and the main subcategories

As outlined earlier the most expensive country for Food was Switzerland, with prices on average 79% above the EU28 average. Table 2 shows the price levels for the main subcategories, i.e. Bread and cereals; Meat; Fish; Milk; Cheese and eggs; Oils and fats and Fruits, vegetables and potatoes, for the 38 European countries.

When we look at the results by the main categories we find that Ireland was the 13th most expensive country for Bread and cereals, 16th most expensive for Meat, joint 14th, along with France and Iceland, most expensive for Fish, 6th most expensive for Milk, cheese and eggs, 14th most expensive for Oils and fats and 4th most expensive for Fruits, vegetables and potatoes.

If we just look at the Eurozone countries we see that Ireland was the 8th most expensive country for Bread and cereals, 9th most expensive for Meat, joint 9th cheapest along with France for Fish, 3rd most expensive for Milk, cheese and eggs, 9th most expensive for Oils and fats and the most expensive country for Fruits, vegetables and potatoes.

Table 2 shows that while the price of Bread & cereals in Ireland was 11% above the EU28 average, the highest price levels were observed jointly in Switzerland and Denmark (62% above the EU28 average) and the lowest price levels were observed in Romania (47% below the EU28 average).  The Scandinavian countries together with Switzerland, Austria and Iceland formed the group of countries with price levels at least 25% above the EU28 average. Prices in the United Kingdom were 4% below the EU28 average. Of the Eurozone countries Austria had the highest price levels, 36% above the EU28 average, while the lowest prices were observed in Lithuania, 23% below the EU28 average.

Of all the Food subcategories the price levels for Meat showed the greatest variation across the 38 European countries. The highest price levels were observed in Switzerland (154% above the EU28 average) and the lowest price levels were observed in Albania (48% below the EU 28 average). The Irish prices were 6% above the EU28 average while prices in the United Kingdom were 12% above the EU28 average. We see less of a variation in prices across the Eurozone countries.  The highest price levels were observed in Austria and the lowest prices were observed in Lithuania, 32% above and 37% below the EU28 average respectively.

The highest price levels for Fish were observed in Switzerland (77% above the EU28 average) and lowest in Poland (41% below the EU28 average). The Irish prices were 8% above the EU28 average while prices in the United Kingdom were 5% above the average. The price levels for Fish in Ireland were the same as those in France and Iceland.  Of the Eurozone countries the highest price levels were observed in Austria (25% above the EU28 average) and the lowest price levels were observed in Lithuania (27% below the EU28 average).

Milk, cheese and eggs price levels were highest in Norway (75% above the EU28 average) and lowest in the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (35% below the EU28 average). The Irish prices were 28% above the EU28 average while prices in the United Kingdom were 18% above the average. Again we find less of a variation in prices among the Eurozone countries. Of the Eurozone countries the highest price levels were observed in Cyprus (40% above the EU28 average) and the lowest price levels were observed in Lithuania (15% below the EU28 average).

Among the 38 European countries the highest price levels for Oils and fats were observed in Switzerland (82% above the EU28 average) while the lowest prices were observed in the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (34% below the EU28 average). The Irish prices were 13% above the EU28 average while prices in the United Kingdom were 3% above the EU28 average. Of the Eurozone countries the highest price levels were observed in Slovakia (28% above the average) while the lowest price levels were observed in Spain (16% below the average).

The price levels for Fruits, vegetables and potatoes were highest in Switzerland (72% above the EU28 average) and lowest in the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (52% below the EU28 average). Prices in the United Kingdom were 16% above the EU28 average. Prices for Fruits, vegetables and potatoes showed less of a variation across the Eurozone countries. Of the Eurozone countries the highest prices were observed in Ireland (36% above the EU28 average)  while prices in Lithuania were 23% below the EU28 average, making it the least expensive Eurozone country for Fruits, vegetables and potatoes.

 

Table 3: Price Level Indices for Alcoholic Beverages 2015 (EU28=100)
CountryAlcoholic Beverages
Norway250
Iceland226
Turkey190
Ireland175
Finland172
United Kingdom163
Sweden141
Denmark138
Switzerland121
Greece117
Latvia106
Netherlands104
Estonia104
Cyprus103
Malta101
Slovenia99
Italy98
Montenegro94
Austria93
Portugal93
Croatia92
Belgium92
Eurozone 1992
Luxembourg89
Lithuania88
France86
Poland85
Germany84
Kosovo*82
Spain81
Slovakia80
Czech Republic79
Albania77
Hungary74
Romania72
Bosnia & Herzegovina72
Serbia68
Bulgaria64
Macedonia, Former Yugoslav Republic of61
*Kosovo under UNSCR 1244/99
Open in Excel: CPL2015TBL3 (XLS 31KB)

Price Level Indices for Alcoholic Beverages

Table 3 shows that there was significant variation in the price levels for Alcoholic Beverages across the 38 European countries. The highest prices were observed in Norway (150% above the EU28 average) and were lowest in the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (39% below the EU28 average).  This means that Alcohol prices in the most expensive country were almost four times more expensive than in the least expensive country.

Prices in Ireland were 75% above the EU28 average making Ireland the 4th most expensive country for Alcoholic Beverages. The price level in Finland was marginally lower, 72% above the EU28 average while the UK prices were 63% above the average.

Within the Eurozone countries the variation in the price level was not as significant. Ireland had the highest price level (75% above the EU28 average) while Slovakia had the lowest (20% below the EU28 average). The price levels in both Ireland and Finland were over 70% above the EU28 average. Of the Eurozone countries the next most expensive country was Greece, 17% above the EU28 average.

Table 4: Price Level Indices for Tobacco 2015 (EU28=100)
CountryTobacco
Norway 220
United Kingdom 218
Ireland                                              189
Iceland 147
Switzerland 140
France                                                      127
Sweden 118
Netherlands 109
Denmark                                            106
Germany                    101
Finland                                              99
Belgium                                                       97
Eurozone 1996
Malta92
Italy 91
Austria                                         85
Spain84
Portugal 83
Luxembourg 83
Cyprus                                                        82
Greece                                                        76
Romania 69
Slovenia 69
Slovakia 64
Estonia                                               62
Poland62
Hungary                                                       60
Czech Republic                                     60
Latvia 59
Croatia                                          56
Lithuania 56
Bulgaria                                                    50
Turkey48
Bosnia & Herzegovina 37
Montenegro35
Serbia 35
Albania 34
Kosovo*33
Macedonia, Former Yugoslav Republic of 25
*Kosovo under UNSCR 1244/99
Open in Excel: CPL2015TBL4 (XLS 32KB)

Price Level Indices for Tobacco

As outlined earlier Norway had the highest price level for Tobacco (120% above the EU28 average). Prices for Tobacco were over 100% higher than the EU28 average for both Norway and the United Kingdom. In Iceland and Switzerland prices were over 40% higher than the EU28 average. The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia was the least expensive country for Tobacco (75% below the EU28 average). For Tobacco the most expensive country was roughly 9 times more expensive than the least expensive country. 

The Irish price level for Tobacco was 89% above the EU28 average and roughly twice the Eurozone 19 average (96).  

When we look at the Eurozone countries we can see that Ireland was the most expensive country, (89% above the EU28 average). The lowest price levels were observed in Lithuania (44% below the EU28 average).

Background Notes

Introduction

Purchasing Power Parities (PPPs) are indicators of price level differences across countries. They indicate how many currency units a given quantity of goods and services will cost in different countries. PPPs can thus be used as currency conversion rates to convert expenditures expressed in national currencies into a common currency, eliminating differences in price levels across countries. This common currency is referred to as the Purchasing Power Standard (PPS). PPPs are indicators primarily designed for comparison between countries rather than for comparison over time.

 

The PPP concept

In their simplest form, PPPs are price relatives that show the ratio of the prices in national currencies of the same good or service in different countries. For example, if the price of a hamburger in Ireland is EUR 2.84 and in the United Kingdom it is GBP 2.20, the PPP for hamburgers between Ireland and the United Kingdom is EUR 2.84 to GBP 2.20, or EUR 1.29 to the pound. In other words, for every pound spent on hamburgers in the United Kingdom, EUR 1.29 would have to be spent in Ireland in order to obtain the same quantity and quality – or volume – of hamburgers.

Published PPPs, usually refer to product groups or broad aggregates like Gross Domestic Product (GDP) rather than to individual products. However, these aggregate PPPs are based on sample surveys of individual goods and services.

 

Price Level Index

The Price Level Index, expresses the price level of a given country relative to another (or relative to a group of countries like the European Union), by dividing the Purchasing Power Parities (PPP) by the current nominal exchange rate.

If the price level index of a country is higher than 100, the country concerned is relatively expensive compared to the one to which it is compared (for example EU), while if the price level index is lower than 100, then the country is relatively cheap compared to the other country.

Price Level Indices are not intended to rank countries strictly. In fact, they only provide an indication of the order of magnitude of the price level in one country in relation to others, particularly when countries are clustered around a very narrow range of outcomes. The degree of uncertainty associated with the basic price data and the methods used for compiling PPPs, may affect in such a case the minor differences between the PLIs and result in differences in ranking which are not statistically or economically significant.

The convergence or divergence of prices among countries is of interest in a number of contexts such as competition policy and consumer protection. PLIs provide a means of observing the movement of price levels over time, but they have to be used with caution. First, except within the euro area, they are influenced by exchange rate fluctuations (being the ratios between PPPs and exchange rates). Second, independently of exchange rates, they are volatile. This is generally so at the lower aggregation levels where sample sizes are small. Usually such volatility diminishes, if not disappears, with aggregation. Volatility particularly arises when the basket of goods and services to be priced changes from one price survey to another in order to accommodate market developments. For example, in this respect, the basket for Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages is relatively stable, while that for electronic goods is altered substantially each time it is surveyed. Volatility of this type also diminishes with aggregation. For these reasons, PLIs are better suited to monitoring price convergence at higher levels of aggregation over long periods of time.

The PLIs for household final consumption expenditure are sometimes used to measure the differences in the cost of living between countries. This is correct to the extent that they indicate whether the overall price level for consumer goods and services faced by the average household in one country is higher or lower than the overall price level for consumer goods and services faced by the average household in another country. Households or individuals considering moving from one country to another for reasons of employment, retirement or even a holiday should exercise caution when attempting to infer from these measures of overall price levels how the change of country will affect their cost of living. The PLIs for household final consumption expenditure reflect the expenditure pattern of the average household which in all likelihood is different from that of the household or individual contemplating the move. Also, the PLIs are national averages and they do not reflect differences in the cost of living between specific locations such as London and Paris or the Côte d’Azur and the Costa del Sol.

 

The impact of exchange rate changes on PLIs
 
PLI for a given country is calculated as its Purchasing Power Parity (PPP) divided by its annual average exchange rate to the euro. This implies that exchange rate movements have an impact on the PLIs. A depreciation of a country's currency against the euro will make the country cheaper in comparison to euro area countries and this will show as a decrease of the relative price level expressed in the PLI. In 2015, several countries experienced relatively large exchange rate movements. The most prominent examples are Turkey and Norway (depreciation of 30.8% and 19.7% respectively between 2012 and 2015) and Switzerland (appreciation of 11.4%). The national currencies of the United Kingdom and Iceland also appreciated against the euro by 10.5% and 9.0% respectively. This explains in part some changes in the position of countries in PLIs compared to previously published data for 2012.

 

Purchasing Power Parities (PPPs) are mainly designed for:

The main use of PPPs is to convert national accounts aggregates, like the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of different countries, into comparable volume aggregates. Applying nominal exchange rate in this process would overestimate the GDP of countries with high price levels relative to countries with low price levels. The use of PPPs ensures that the GDP of all countries is valued at a uniform price level and thus reflects only differences in the actual volume of the economy.

PPPs are also applied in the analysis of relative price levels across countries. For this purpose, the PPPs are divided by the current nominal exchange rate to obtain a Price Level Index which expresses the price level of a given country relative to another, or relative to a group of countries like the EU28.

PPPs are also used in the analysis of price convergence.

 

PPPs are not designed for:

Strict ranking of countries without taking statistical error margins into account
Calculating national growth rates
Industry-specific output and productivity comparisons
Cost-of-living comparisons for individuals
Assessing potential undervaluation or overvaluation of currencies or use as equilibrium exchange rates 

 

What type of Products are priced?

As already outlined Price Level Indices are derived from Purchasing Power Parities. Purchasing Power Parities, in their most elementary form, are price ratios for a comparable product (a good or a service) in different countries. Prices in the national currency serve as a starting point. Comparisons on the basis of PPPs are thus founded on ratios of purchaser prices in different currencies for identical or comparable products (e.g. 1 kg rice, 1 bottle of whiskey). These goods and services are carefully defined in detailed product descriptions, at a European level, prior to the price survey and are selected taking into account their representativity. An overview of the product types for the Food, Beverages and Tobacco survey is given below. The complete item list is included at the end of the Background Notes.

Bread and Cereals: rice, other cereals, flour and other cereal products, bread, other bakery products and pasta products.
Meat: beef and veal, pork, lamb, mutton and goat, poultry, other meats and edible offal, delicatessen and other meat preparations.
Fish: fresh, chilled or frozen fish and seafood, preserved or processed fish and seafood.
Milk, Cheese, Eggs: fresh milk, preserved milk and other milk products, cheese, eggs and egg-based products.
Oils and Fats: butter, margarine, other edible oils and fats.
Fruits, Vegetables and Potatoes: fresh or chilled fruit, frozen, preserved or processed fruit and fruit-based products, fresh or chilled potatoes, frozen, preserved or processed vegetables and vegetable-based products.
Other Food Products: sugar, jams, marmalades and honey, confectionery, chocolate and other cocoa preparations, edible ice, ice cream and sorbet and food products n.e.c.
Non-Alcoholic Beverages: coffee, tea and cocoa, mineral waters, soft drinks and concentrates, fruit and vegetable juices.
Alcoholic Beverages: spirits, wine and beer.
Tobacco: tobacco.

A total of 440 items were included in the product list for the 2015 Food Beverages and Tobacco Survey. This item list was circulated to all 38 Countries. In Ireland we priced 375 items and collected 6,200 prices. The prices were collected in Dublin in a variety of outlets mainly in Supermarkets and specialty stores e.g. Greengrocers, Butcher shops, Fishmongers, Off Licence stores etc. Price collections took place in Dublin City and Suburbs during April 2015.

 

Survey prices to National prices

After each survey all countries are required to provide Eurostat with spatial adjustment factors in order to adjust average prices obtained from one or more locations within the economic territory of a participating country to national average prices.  According to the PPP Regulation they are required to measure regional differences in price levels once every six years. Currently Ireland, and a number of other countries, submits a factor of 1.

It is planned to review this factor in the coming months.

 

National prices to annual national prices

The national survey prices, irrespective of whether they are adjusted capital city prices or national prices supplied directly by countries, refer to the point in time when the survey was conducted, for the Food Beverages and Tobacco Survey this was April 2015. They are not annual prices and need to be adjusted accordingly. To this end, participating countries are required to provide Eurostat or the OECD with monthly temporal adjustment factors with which the national survey prices can be converted to national annual prices. Ireland supplies Eurostat with the required Harmonized Index of Consumer Prices (HICP) data for this purpose.

 

Type of prices collected

The aim of the survey is to collect the prices that purchasers would have to pay if they were to actually purchase the goods and services specified at the time of the survey.

For the purpose of the Food, Beverages and Tobacco survey VAT and other indirect taxes e.g. excise duty are included. In general, discounts are excluded.

 

What does all this mean?

It is important to note that PLIs are national averages and they do not reflect differences in the cost of living between specific locations such as London and Paris or the Côte d’Azur and the Costa del Sol.

As already mentioned, PLIs are not intended to rank countries strictly. In fact, they only provide an indication of the order of magnitude of the price level in one country in relation to others, particularly when countries are clustered around a very narrow range of outcomes.

PLIs can provide a means of observing the movement of price levels over time, but they have to be used with caution. First, except within the euro area, they are influenced by exchange rate fluctuations (being the ratios between PPPs and exchange rates). Second, independently of exchange rates, they are volatile. This is generally so at the lower aggregation levels where sample sizes are small. For these reasons, PLIs are better suited to monitoring price convergence at higher levels of aggregation over long periods of time. 

The Consumer Price Index is a more reliable measure of the development of prices in a given country. Similarly if we want to compare the rate of price change in two or more countries the Harmonized Index of Consumer Prices (HICP) is readily available, at least for European Countries.

A time series of PLIs shows, for each consecutive year, the various countries’ price levels in relation to each other, and provides a rough indication of how these relative price levels have developed.

Country codes

EU Member States:

Austria (AT)
Belgium (BE)
Bulgaria (BU)
Croatia (HR)
Cyprus (CY)
Czech Republic (CZ)
Denmark (DK)
Estonia (EE)
Finland (FI)
France (FR)
Germany (DE)
Greece (EL)
Hungary (HU)
Ireland (IE)
Italy (IT)
Latvia (LV)
Lithuania (LT)
Luxembourg (LU)
Malta (MA)
Netherlands (NE)
Poland (PL)
Portugal (PT)
Romania (RO)
Slovakia (SK)
Slovenia (SI)
Spain (ES)
Sweden (SE)
United Kingdom (UK)

Candidate Countries:

Albania (AL)
Macedonia, Former Yugoslav Republic of (MK)*
Montenegro (ME)
Serbia (RS)
Turkey (TR)

*MK: Provisional code which does not prejudge in any way the definitive nomenclature for this country which will be agreed following the conclusion of negotiations currently taking place on this subject at the UN.

Potential Candidate Countries:

Bosnia & Herzegovina (BA)

EFTA Countries:

Iceland (IS)
Norway (NO)
Switzerland (CH) 

Price level indices for Kosovo (under UNSCR 1244/99) are also included.

Food Beverages and Tobacco Survey – the complete item list

Item list Abbreviations:

BL = Brandless
SB = Specific Brand
WKB = Well Known Brand

 

Bread and cereals

Long-grain rice, parboiled, WKB
Long-grain rice, not parboiled, BL
Long-grain rice, parboiled, in cooking bags, WKB
Round-grain rice, WKB
Risotto rice, WKB
Basmati rice, WKB
Sticky rice, WKB
Wheat flour, WKB
Wheat flour, BL
Wheat semolina, WKB
Flaked oats for cooking, WKB
Baguette
Roll
Roll, multicorn
Bread, white, small loaf
Bread, white, large loaf
Bread, white, industrially packed, WKB
Bread, white, toast, small pack, WKB
Bread, white, toast, large pack, WKB
Bread, whole meal, wheat
Bread, whole meal, wheat, toast, WKB
Bread, whole meal, rye, WKB
Bread, mixed
Bread, mixed, organic
Bread, multicorn
Bread, multicorn, industrially packed, WKB
Bread rye, sold loose
Bread, rye, industrially packed, WKB
Rye portion bread, industrially packed, WKB
Biscuits, with butter, WKB
Biscuits, chocolate chip cookies, WKB
Biscuits, chocolate chip cookies, BL
Biscuits, sandwich cream, WKB
Biscuits, wafers, WKB
Ladyfinger biscuits, WKB
Biscuits, salted crackers, SB
Sponge cake base, WKB
Croissant
Doughnut
Wheat tortillas, WKB
Rusks, WKB
Crispbread, Swedish type, SB
Pizza, frozen, SB
Pizza, frozen, WKB
Pizza, frozen, BL
Spaghetti, SB
Spaghetti, WKB
Spaghetti, BL
Pasta, without eggs, WKB
Pasta, without eggs, BL
Pasta, with eggs, WKB
Fresh tortellini or ravioli, WKB
Lasagne bolognese, frozen, WKB
Couscous, WKB
Cornflakes, SB
Cornflakes, BL
Breakfast cereal, SB
Cocoa/chocolate flavoured breakfast cereals, WKB
Muesli, crunchy, WKB
Muesli, WKB
Breakfast cereal bars, WKB
Maize starch, WKB
Puff pastry, frozen, WKB
Chocolate cake baking-mix, WKB
Chocolate muffin baking mix, WKB

 

Meat

Beef, fillet, tenderloin
Beef, rumpsteak
Beef, center brisket, with bones
Beef, Silverside
Beef, Sirloin steak
Beef, cubes for stew
Beef, minced
Veal, breast, with bones
Veal, schnitzel/escalope
Veal, loin
Pork, fillet, tenderloin
Pork, schnitzel/escalope
Pork, loin chop
Pork, belly
Pork, ribs
Pork, collar
Pork, shreds or dices
Pork, joint piece for roasting
Lamb, hind leg
Lamb, middle loin chops
Frozen lamb, whole leg
Chicken, for roasting
Chicken, for roasting, free range
Chicken, for roasting, frozen
Chicken breast, fillets
Chicken breast, fillets, shreds or dices
Chicken legs, whole leg incl. thigh and drumstick
Chicken liver
Turkey breast, fillet
Bacon, sold loose
Bacon, industrially packed, WKB
Sausage, Frankfurter/Wiener type, natural skin, WKB
Sausage, Frankfurter/Wiener type, artificial skin, WKB
Sausage, Frankfurter/Wiener type, poultry meat, WKB
Sausage, fresh and raw, sold loose
Sausage, mortadella type, sold loose
Cooked pork sausage, country typical variety, sold loose
Ham, air dried, sold loose
Ham, air dried, industrially packed, WKB
Ham, from the thigh, cooked and smoked, sold loose
Ham, pressed, WKB
Ham, turkey, WKB
Salami, sold loose
Salami, WKB
Beef/pork, minced
Grilled/roasted chicken
Pork liver pâté, tinned, WKB
Luncheon meat, WKB
Chicken nuggets/dippers, frozen, WKB
Precooked meat balls, WKB

 

Fish and seafood

Carp (Cyprinus carpio)
Cod (Gadus morhua), fillet
Mackerel (Scomber scombrus)
Plaice (Pleuronectes platessa), fillet
Rainbow-Trout (Salmo gairdneri)
Salmon (Atlantic salmon - Salmo salar), fillet
Salmon, steak (Atlantic salmon - Salmo salar)
Sardines (Sardina pilchardus)
Sea bass (Dicentrarchus labrax)
Cod (Gadus morhua), frozen, WKB
Hake (Merluccius merluccius), Alaska Pollock (Theragra chalcogramma), fillet, frozen, WKB
Pangasius catfish (Pangasius hypophthalmus), fillet, frozen, BL
Salmon, fillet, frozen, WKB
Mussels (Moule mytilidae)
Squid (Loligo vulgaris)
Shrimps (Crangon crangon), fresh, peeled
Shrimps (Pandalus borealis), fresh, unpeeled
Octopus (Octopus vulgaris)
Calamari rings, WKB
Sea fruits ("Frutti di mare"), WKB
Shrimps (Pandalus borealis), small package, WKB
Shrimps (Pandalus borealis), large package WKB
Hot-smoked mackerel (Scomber scombrus), fillet, WKB
Cold-smoked salmon, WKB
Herring fillets in jar, WKB
Tinned sardines, in olive oil, with skin and bones, WKB
Tinned sardines, in vegetable oil, WKB
Tinned mackerel fillet, in tomato sauce or vegetable oil, WKB
Tinned pink tuna (Skipjack, Thunnus Thynn, Albacares = yellow fin), WKB
Tinned tuna flakes, in vegetable oil, BL
Breaded fish fillet (Pollock), 2 - 4 pieces, frozen, WKB
Breaded fish fillet (Cod), 2 - 5 pieces, frozen, WKB
Fish fingers, from fillet, WKB
Fish fingers, BL

 

Milk, cheese and eggs

Milk fresh unskimmed, organic, WKB
Milk, fresh, unskimmed, WKB
Milk, fresh, unskimmed, BL
Milk, UHT, unskimmed, WKB
Milk, fresh, semi-skimmed, organic, WKB
Milk, fresh, semi-skimmed, WKB
Milk, UHT, semi-skimmed, WKB
Milk, UHT, semi-skimmed, BL
Milk, fresh, skimmed, WKB
Coffee creamer, liquid, WKB
Milk, condensed, WKB
Milk, powdered, for babies, WKB
Natural yoghurt, small pack, WKB
Natural yoghurt, low fat, large pack, WKB
Natural yoghurt, BL
Yoghurt, multipack, SB
Fruit yoghurt, WKB
Fruit yoghurt, low fat, small pack, WKB
Yoghurt, fruit flavoured, multipack, WKB
Yoghurt drink, multipack, SB
Yoghurt drink, fruit flavoured, WKB
Cream cheese, SB
Cream cheese, industrially packed, WKB
Cheese, processed, sliced, industrially packed, WKB
Cheese, processed, spreadable, industrially packed, WKB
Cheese, blue, industrially packed, WKB
Cheese, original Brie, industrially packed, WKB
Cheese, Camembert type, industrially packed, WKB
Cheese, Edam type, young, sold loose, WKB
Cheese, Edam or Gouda type, young, industrially packed, BL
Cheese, Emmental type, industrially packed, WKB
Cheese, original Feta, industrially packed, WKB
Cheese, Feta type, industrially packed, WKB
Cheese, Gouda type, sold loose, WKB
Cheese, Gouda type, industrially packed, WKB
Cheese, Grana Padano, industrially packed, WKB
Cheese, Mozzarella, industrially packed, WKB
Cheese, Parmesan type, dehydrated & grated, industrially packed, WKB
Gratin cheese, grated, industrially packed, WKB
Sour cream / crème epaisse / smetana, WKB
Sour cream / crème epaisse légère / smetana, low fat, WKB
Sour cream / crème epaisse légère / smetana, low fat, BL
Cream for whipping, WKB
Whipped cream in container, WKB
Dessert creme (pudding), chocolate or vanilla, WKB
Chicken eggs, caged hen, large size
Chicken eggs, caged hen, medium size
Chicken eggs, barn hen (élevées au sol, Bodenhaltung)
Chicken eggs, free range
Chicken eggs, organic

 

Oils and fats

Butter, unsalted, WKB
Butter, unsalted, BL
Butter, salted, WKB
Margarine, for spreading and cooking, WKB
Margarine, for spreading and cooking, BL
Margarine, low fat, for spreading, WKB
Margarine, for cooking, WKB
Peanut butter, smooth, WKB
Olive oil, extra virgin, WKB
Olive oil, extra virgin, BL
Corn / maize oil, WKB
Sunflower oil, WKB
Sunflower oil, BL
Vegetable oil, for frying, WKB

 

Fruits

Fresh apples, Golden Delicious or Granny Smith
Fresh apples, country typical variety
Fresh bananas
Fresh oranges
Fresh mandarines
Fresh lemons
Fresh grapes, white
Fresh pears
Fresh watermelon
Fresh peaches
Fresh kiwis
Fresh strawberries
Fresh pineapples
Frozen strawberries, WKB
Frozen raspberries, WKB
Frozen berries, mixed, BL
Dried almonds, peeled, WKB
Dried hazelnuts, WKB
Dried walnuts, WKB
Dried cashew nuts, WKB
Dried peanuts, WKB
Raisins, WKB
Raisins, BL
Dried prunes, WKB
Tinned peaches, in syrup, WKB
Tinned peaches, in syrup, BL
Tinned pineapple, whole slices, BL
Tinned pears, in syrup, WKB
Fruit cocktail, in syrup, WKB

 

Vegetables

Fresh aubergines (eggplants)
Fresh broccoli
Fresh cabbage lettuce, round, soft leaves
Fresh carrots
Fresh cauliflower
Fresh courgettes
Fresh cucumber
Fresh cultivated mushrooms, white, whole
Fresh green pepper
Fresh leek
Fresh lettuce, iceberg
Fresh mixed salad, in bag
Fresh tomatoes, round
Fresh tomato cluster
Fresh white cabbage
Fresh yellow onions
Garlic
Frozen green beans, fine, WKB
Frozen mixed vegetables, natural, WKB
Frozen mixed vegetables, natural, BL
Frozen peas, small/fine, SB
Frozen spinach, natural, WKB
Tinned sweet corn, BL
Tomato puree (Passata di Pomodoro), WKB
Chopped tomatoes, WKB
Chopped tomatoes, BL
Mushrooms, slices in salt water, BL
Beetroot, slices in vinegar, WKB
Green olives, without stones, WKB
Pickled gherkins, WKB
Tomato paste, WKB
Dried white beans, BL
Dried lentils, WKB
Fresh potatoes, sold loose
Fresh potatoes, industrially packed
Fresh potatoes, labeled "new"
Frozen French fries, WKB
Salted crisps, SB
Potato crisps, WKB
Potato crisps, BL
Potato crisps, flavoured, WKB 

 

Sugar, jam, honey, chocolate and confectionery

White sugar, WKB
White sugar, BL
Icing sugar, WKB
Sugar lumps, WKB
Honey, mixed blossoms, WKB
Honey, mixed blossoms, BL
Jam, apricot or strawberry, WKB
Jam, apricot or strawberry, BL
Jam, red berries, WKB
Chocolate, dark, SB
Chocolate, milk, with hazelnuts, SB
Chocolate, milk, WKB
Chocolate, milk, BL
Milk chocolate bars, SB
Chocolate bar, individually sold, SB
Chocolate bar, with almonds and honey, SB
Chocolate bar, multipack, SB
Chocolate egg, individually sold, Kinder Surprise, SB
Caramel sweets, "Toffees", WKB
Fruit drops, WKB
Jellies, SB
Assorted jellies, WKB
Chewy candies, toffees, WKB
Chewing gum, 10 - 12 pellets, WKB
Chewing gum, bag, WKB
Nutella, SB
Ice cream, single piece SB
Ice cream, multipack SB
Ice cream, Magnum type, single piece, WKB
Ice cream, Cornetto type, single piece, WKB
Ice cream, Cornetto type, multipack, WKB
Ice cream, 500 - 1000 ml, SB
Ice cream, 500 - 1000 ml, WKB
Ice cream, 1000 - 2500 ml, BL
Sweetener, tablets, SB
Sweetener, tablets, WKB
 

Food products n.e.c.

Tomato ketchup, SB
Tomato ketchup, WKB
Tomato ketchup, BL
Mayonnaise, WKB
Mustard, WKB
Soya sauce, WKB
Tomato sauce for pasta (sugo), WKB
Mineral table salt, WKB
Mineral table salt, BL
Sea salt, WKB
Black pepper, WKB
Cinnamon, WKB
Baby food, fruit or vegetable base, puree, WKB
Baby food, rice base (infant cereal), WKB
Baby food, meat base, WKB
Baby food, flour base (infant cereal), WKB
Baby food, semolina base, WKB
Ready-made meal, chicken and rice, chilled, WKB
Ready-made meal, including meat, frozen, WKB
Triangle sandwich, WKB
Burger sandwiches, double-pack, WKB
Yeast, fresh
Soup in sachet, cream of mushroom, SB
Meat extract, SB
Dried mixed vegetables (Vegeta type), with salt, WKB

 

Non-Alcoholic Beverages

Coffee, roasted, Arabica, WKB
Coffee, roasted, blend, small pack, WKB
Coffee, roasted, blend, large pack, WKB
Instant coffee, SB
Instant coffee, WKB
Instant coffee, BL
Coffee pads, WKB
Coffee capsules, SB
Earl grey tea, SB
Black tea, small box, WKB
Black tea, large box, WKB
Black tea, small box, BL
Green tea, in bags, WKB
Infusion, blossoms or herbs or fruits, WKB
Cocoa, powder, WKB
Cocoa instant drink, powder, SB
Cocoa instant drink, powder, WKB
Mineral water, SB
Water, carbonated, small bottle, WKB
Water, carbonated, flavoured, small bottle, WKB
Water, carbonated, large bottle, WKB
Water, still, small bottle, WKB
Water, still, large bottle, WKB
Water, still, large bottle, multipack, WKB
Water, still, large bottle, BL
Cola, SB1, bottle
Cola, SB, bottle, multipack
Cola, SB, can
Cola, SB, can, multipack
Cola, SB2, bottle
Cola, bottle, BL
Carbonated drink, orange flavoured, WKB
Energy drink, SB
Ice tea, WKB
Orange juice, WKB
Orange juice, BL
Apple juice, not from concentrate, WKB
Apple juice, BL

 

Alcoholic Beverages

Cognac, SB
Scotch whiskey, SB
Irish whiskey, SB
American whiskey, SB
Vodka, WKB
Gin, SB
White Rum, SB
Liqueur, SB
Liqueur with herbs, SB
Brandy, WKB
Fruit spirit, WKB
Rum Energy Drink
Red wine, table wine, in a bottle, BL
Red wine, regional wine, European, in a box, WKB
Red wine, regional wine, European, Cabernet Sauvignon, in a bottle, WKB
Red wine, regional wine, European, Syrah (Shiraz), in a bottle, WKB
Red wine, ACO, European, Cabernet Sauvignon, WKB
Red wine, ACO, European, Merlot, WKB
Red wine, Spain, SB
Red wine, non-European, in a box, WKB
Red wine, non-European, Cabernet Sauvignon, WKB
Red wine, non-European, Merlot, WKB
White wine, table wine, in a bottle, BL
White wine, ACO, European, Chardonnay, WKB
White wine, ACO, European, Riesling, WKB
White wine, ACO, European, Sauvignon Blanc, WKB
White wine, non-European, Chardonnay, WKB
White wine, non-European, Sauvignon Blanc, WKB
Rosé wine, ACO, European, WKB
Champagne, SB
Sparkling wine, méthode Champenoise (fermentation in the
bottle), WKB
Sparkling wine, fermentation in tank, WKB
Apple cider, WKB
Aperitif, SB
Aperitif, Vermouth, SB
Aperitif, Tawny Port wine, WKB
Beer, domestic brand, single bottle, WKB
Beer, domestic brand, multipack of bottles, WKB
Beer, domestic brand, bottle crate, WKB
Beer, domestic brand, single can, WKB
Beer, domestic brand, multipack of cans, WKB
Beer, single can, BL
Beer, SB1
Beer, SB2
Beer, multipack, SB
Beer, domestic brand, single bottle, lower alcohol, WKB
Beer, domestic brand, multipack of bottles, lower alcohol, WKB
Beer, domestic brand, single can, lower alcohol, WKB
Beer, domestic brand, multipack of cans, lower alcohol, WKB

 

Tobacco

Cigarettes, with filter, domestic brand, WKB
Cigarettes, with filter, not domestic brand, WKB
Cigarettes, with filter, SB1
Cigarettes, with filter, SB2
Cigarettes, with filter, SB3
Cigarettes, with filter, SB4
Cigarettes, with filter, SB5
Cigarettes, with filter, SB6
Roll Your Own tobacco, WKB
 

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