UAE: why prices of some common grocery items are on the rise

UAE grocery prices of certain consumer items including chillies, black pepper, lentils and sugar are on the rise because of lower-than-expected crops in India.

Retailers said that the upward trend could continue for the rest of the year.

Chairman and managing director of Al Adil Trading, a leading importers of spices and other staple food products from India, Dhananjay Datar, said: “Prices of some commonly-consumed spices such as [chillies], cumin, turmeric, seeds, and black pepper are going up because of crop failure in India. “

“In addition, prices of sugar and different types of lentils have risen as well. For the remainder of the year, the prices could go higher further due to the shortage of these items. It’s only due to less crop than estimated, as other key aspects such as shipping costs and currency are the same.”

Emirates NBD Research expects overall inflation in the UAE to average 3.5 per cent this year compared to 4.8 per cent last year. 

Inflation in Dubai slowed to a 14-month low of 3.3 per cent in April, down from 4.3 per cent in March.

India is one of the largest source markets for staple food items for UAE importers.

Mr Datar advised traders look to source these consumer products mainly from India as they can import in large quantities: “However, prices of items to be imported from India could see rise of up to another 30 per cent.”