Argentina's basic food basket rose 3.2% in September, according to data released Tuesday by the National Institute of Statistics and Census (Indec).
The monthly increase in the Total Basic Basket (CBT), which defines the level of poverty, was below the monthly inflation of 3.5%, it was also reported.
The CBT registered a YoY increase of 49.4% and it rose 28.7% since December, both indexes below the variation of retail prices in the same period.
The Basic Food Basket (CBA), which defines the level of extreme poverty, grew by 54.5% in the last year, above inflation of 52.5% and increased by 32.4% in the first nine months, below the cost of living which grew 37%.
In this scenario, the newly appointed Domestic Trade Secretary Roberto Feletti announced a new set of nearly 1500 items with their prices frozen effective Oct. 21 until Jan. 7 even though no agreement could be reached with business chambers in the food sector.
The list of items was expanded from 1,247 products to 1,650, thanks to a series of additions to the programs currently in force.
The new Frozen Price product basket will include warehouse as well as cleaning and hygiene and personal care items.
The new Frozen Prices program will largely resemble the existing Looked-after Prices scheme and is due to be detailed in Wednesday's Official Gazette, but Feletti has warned it would be “much broader, with more than twice the number of products.
Feletti explained he intended to guarantee some price stability “to facilitate the expansion of consumption, thus seeking an improvement in purchasing power which should reach wage earners and middle-income sectors.