Moscow: Several food items have become costlier in Russia due to inflation in wake of the Western sanctions, but the hardest hit is ‘chewing gum’, media reports said.
Chewing gum tops the list of food items that have seen the steepest increase in retail price in Russia over the past year, RT reported, citing a report in business daily RBK based on data from the State Statistics Service, Rosstat.
The average price for a pack of chewing gum was 39 rubles ($0.47) in March, which is just over 22 per cent more than in the same month last year, according to Rosstat figures.
Among other food items hit hard by inflation are margarine, cucumbers, and ice cream.
According to industry representatives cited by RBK, chewing gum prices have been driven up by the Western sanctions on Russia. Imports of the main components for the production of gum base have been restricted, as well as the supply of materials for packaging. Russian manufacturers of gum base have reportedly been unable to make up for the shortfall.
Chewing gum is manufactured in Russia by Wrigley – a subsidiary of US-based Mars, which manufactures Orbit, Wrigley’s, and Eclipse – US’ Mondelez, which makes Dirol, and Perfetti Van Melle, which makes Mentos.
While Mars and Mondelez have scaled back their activities in Russia, the Italian-Dutch Perfetti Van Melle is still said to be operating.