Electricity and gas prices for December will increase at all major power and gas companies.

The company-wide price increase has been for four consecutive months, and some electric power companies have increased their electricity prices by more than 1,000 yen compared to January.

The main reason for the rise in electricity and gas prices is that the import prices of LNG = liquefied natural gas, which is the fuel for thermal power generation, are rising.

Each company has already decided to raise the price for next month, and it seems that the burden on households will increase further.

Increased prices for "sugar" and "commercial flour"

Food prices are likely to continue to rise.

Due to rising raw material prices and distribution costs, the shipping price of sugar from major manufacturers has increased from the 1st for most products, and the price of commercial flour has also increased from the end of this month, making it a manufacturer of the food service industry and processed foods. In such cases, we are under pressure to respond.

Sugar manufacturers such as "DM Mitsui Sugar Holdings" and "Nissin Sugar", which own Mitsui Sugar and Dainippon Meiji Sugar, have shipped 1 kg from 1 day for most of the sugar products except some. We have raised the price by 6 yen per item.

This is the third increase in sugar shipping prices, following March and July.

Reasons for price increases At each company, there is concern that the supply of sugar cane, which is the main raw material, will decrease due to unseasonable weather, and the demand for biofuel material is expanding, while the international price of raw sugar made from sugar cane is rising. In addition, it is said that the main factor is that distribution costs are rising due to the normalization of economic activities from the corona disaster.

In addition, for commercial wheat flour, three major flour mill manufacturers, Nisshin Flour Milling, Nippon Flour, and Showa Sangyo, will raise prices from the delivery on the 20th of this month.

Due to the unseasonable weather in North America, which is the main production area, the price of imported wheat sold by the government has been raised. The medium-strength flour and soft-strength flour used in confectionery are 345 yen for Nisshin Flour and Showa Sangyo, and 340 yen for Nippon Flour Mills.

Sugar and flour are used in a wide range of food products, and for the food service industry, where sales have fallen sharply due to the corona sickness, rising food prices are likely to continue to be a burden on business recovery.

Soaring food prices hit the food service industry

A major restaurant company, which continues to be harshly managed due to the corona, is working to further reduce costs in an effort to maintain product prices as much as possible even when profits are being further squeezed by rising raw material prices.

Skylark Holdings Co., Ltd., a major restaurant company with about 3,000 stores nationwide, is delaying the recovery of customers who have fallen due to the corona disaster, and in addition to rising raw material prices such as chicken and beef, rising electricity and gas prices, etc. The burden of operating costs for the store is even heavier.

For this reason, the company is focusing on standardizing the cooking process of ingredients handled by its restaurant chains as a further cost reduction measure.

Ingredients used in each business category, such as family restaurants, Chinese food, and Japanese food, are purchased in large quantities and cooked together at our own processing facility. We have made it common so that chicken used in many business formats can be processed on the same line.

However, there is a limit to the types of ingredients that can be shared, and if raw material prices and fuel costs continue to rise, we will continue to consider whether we can maintain the current product prices depending on the situation. ..

Price maintenance by reducing Christmas cake "inventory loss"

Among domestic companies, there is a conspicuous movement to absorb the increase in costs through corporate efforts, as they cannot pass on the selling price even in the face of a sharp rise in raw material prices.

According to "Cake.jp", a cake-specialized online shopping site operator whose orders are at their peak before the Christmas season, the price of eggs, which are the ingredients of cakes, has increased by about 9% compared to last year, and oils and fats such as salad oil have increased. The purchase price has risen by about 14% and flour by about 6%, but we have no plans to raise the price of the product so far.

With raw material prices soaring, companies are working to secure profits by reducing inventory losses.

By securing raw materials and personnel according to the sales forecast for each product, we are able to reduce extra costs, reduce inventory loss, and maintain selling prices.

Meatballs are available at lower shipping costs

At Ishii Food Co., Ltd., a food manufacturer in Funabashi City, Chiba Prefecture, the purchase price of ingredients such as onions used for meatballs, which is the main product, has increased, and the price of rapeseed oil used for frying meatballs has also increased from 50% compared to last year. It is said that the price has increased by about 80%, but for the time being, we decided to keep the price unchanged at 120 yen (excluding tax) for one meatball bag.

The company is making efforts to reduce costs as much as possible, such as increasing the amount of meatballs packed in cardboard when shipping and reducing the number of deliveries.

President Tomoyasu Ishii said, "I would like to work on the medium- to long-term development of technology to change the way of distribution and reduce oil to make delicious products, but in the future, not only cheap but also good products will be bought and supported at reasonable prices. I think it's important to create a flow. "

"Stealth price increase" to maintain the price and reduce the amount

While the price of the product remains unchanged without raising the price, there is a movement to reduce the content and respond.

Of these, Calbee announced at the end of October that it would raise the price of some products and change the content of a total of 15 products.

Of the mainstay "potato chips", the content of 85 grams will be reduced by 5 grams from January 31, next year to 80 grams, and "Jagarico Salad" will be 60 grams from January 24, next year. It means changing the amount to 57 grams.

In addition, Koike-ya will reduce the content of the product "Potato Chips Nori Shio" for convenience stores from 88 grams to 83 grams from the end of January next year due to the soaring price of raw materials, and will increase the cost of raw materials for Ajinomoto Frozen Foods. For the reason, we have decided to raise the price of some frozen foods and change the content from the delivery in February next year.

This movement to reduce the content without changing the price is called "stealth price increase", which is similar to a fighter aircraft that is difficult to be detected by radar on SNS etc. because it is difficult for consumers to notice.

Expert "It is difficult to raise the price with" deflation mind ""

Naoko Kuga, senior researcher at Nisseikiso Research Institute, who is familiar with consumer behavior, said, "It is natural to raise the price of products if the cost increases, but in Japan it is natural that there are cheap products while wages do not rise. The impact of the fostering of "Defremind" is extremely large. "

"In Japan, the income of young people is becoming difficult to grow, and with the declining birthrate and aging population, there is a great deal of anxiety about social security, and the desire to save money to buy things as cheaply as possible is the basis of consumer behavior. The proportion of these consumers is higher than in other countries. As a result, companies that want to avoid price increases have absorbed the rise in costs by holding down labor costs and purchase prices. " I'm pointing out a problem.