Agricultural input price index down 3% to August 2020

The agricultural input price index decreased by 3% in August 2020 compared with August 2019, according to the latest data from the Central Statistics Office (CSO).

The agricultural output price index increased by 5.8% in August 2020 compared with the same month last year.

Meanwhile, the agricultural output price index decreased by 0.9% in August 2020 compared with July 2020. The agricultural input price index decreased by 0.1% over the same period.

The resulting terms of trade index was down 0.8% in this period.

The indices monitor trends in prices paid to farmers for their produce and in prices paid by farmers for purchases of goods and services.

An EU harmonised methodology is used to compile the price indices. The estimates are also sent to Eurostat – the statistical office of the EU.

Agricultural Input Price Index

The index for fertiliser dropped by 11.8% on an annual basis between August 2019 and August 2020.

Feeding stuffs saw a decrease of 1.8% during the same period while veterinary costs went up by 1.4% year-on-year.

Motor fuels saw a decrease of 11.7% according to the index by the CSO.

Agricultural Output Price Index

In terms of crop output, there was a 3% decrease between July and August 2020; however, the figure is still 1.3% higher than August 2019.

The annual figures show a decrease in pigs and poultry output – down 3.4% and 1.6% respectively.

Cattle and sheep output is up year-on-year by 11.7% and 12.8% respectively.

Milk output price was up by 5% in August compared to August 2019; however, wool sub-index was two-thirds less (-66%).

Price coverage

The actual prices used for the index series are based on the market price without the deduction of bonuses, taxes or levies with the exception of deductible value added tax (VAT) and third party levies.

Standardised prices are used for milk and cereals to ensure that products of identical quality are priced in successive periods.

In the case of milk for manufacturing, this means pricing at a fixed fat and protein content. Standardised cereal prices are based on the harvest price at 20% moisture content.