In a country known for incredible pasta and a vast pasta culture, increased prices can make a big impact on Italians.
According to The Washington Post, pasta prices jumped 17.5% year-over-year in March, prompting the country’s business enterprise minister to call a crisis meeting to address the situation.
Italy’s consumer price inflation was 8.1% in March, making the pasta increase more than double the rest of the country’s inflation, despite a drop in wheat prices, per the Post.
Business Insider reported that Coldiretti, an Italian agriculture group, said the pasta price jump is an “anomaly that needs clarification,” especially because the prices of wheat dropped 30% last year, according to Italian publication ANSA.
A government-appointed watchdog will chair the crisis talks starting Thursday, which “will mark the first meeting of a new committee set up to monitor unusual price movements,” Reuters reported.
“Our intention is to reactivate the national experimental commission for durum wheat as soon as possible, not excluding proceeding with the establishment of a single national commission, to strengthen the dialogue between the players in the supply chain and for the formation of a shared price nationwide,” Minister of Agriculture Francesco Lollobrigida said, per ANSA, translation from Food & Wine.
According to Food & Wine, Italians are the world’s largest consumers of pasta — “eating an average of 51 pounds” of the stuff each year.