Belgian supermarkets have kept their prices more elevated after lockdowns, for both private labels and major brands. Prices rose most at Colruyt (+ 5 %), but remained almost level at Delhaize, Intermarché and Match.
Prices remain elevated
Two formats of the Colruyt group, the eponymous market leader and its online sibling Collect&Go, recorded the highest price jumps with 5 % and 4 % respectively. Delhaize, Intermarché and Match kept their prices level or were even able to lower them a little bit, the other chains saw a price increase between 2 % and 3 %. The consumer organisation added that Colruyt remained one of the cheapest chains, despite this hike.
There was a more pronounced spread with products of A-brands, which became 12 % more expensive at Colruyt and 10 %, but 1 % cheaper at Albert Heijn. Private labels became 5 % more expensive at Colruyt (and 4 % at Collect&Go), but dropped in price at Delhaize and Intermarché.
Purchasing power drops
The consumer organisation demands better protection for consumers, as the financial consequences of the Covid-19 crisis are starting to weigh on a growing number of families. It is not acceptable that prices rise, at a time in which families' purchasing power is dropping, the organisation added.
A governmental decision to ban discounts in supermarkets - an attempt to reduce stockpiling - was the start of a sudden rise in prices. However, after the ban was lifted, prices remained higher in most of the chains consumer organisation Test-Aankoop/Test-Achats researched through a basket of 267 products.