Consumption in March 2021 dropped 26 percent from the previous year, highlighting the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on Argentina's economy.
The data was uncovered by Focus Market using Scanntech, a code reader at 650 points of sale throughout the country.
"Consumption shows a year-on-year drop compared to March 2021," said Damián Di Pace from Focus Market, who said there had been a surge in March 2020 in the lead-up to the nationwide coronavirus lockdown.
“However, the evolution of inflation for foodstuffs in the first trimester of the year leaves the middle and lower classes in Argentine experiencing a strong loss of purchasing power when buying the same amount of goods with their income level. As for the [Buenos Aires] metropolitan area, the fall is more intense than in the interior of the country,” he added.
Of the 120 product categories analysed, the consumption of energy drinks, chocolates and sweets grew significantly over the past year, while sales of cloth, bleach and air fresheners fell.
Sweets, for example, showed growth of 31.9 percent driven by greater social circulation compared to March 2020, since it is an impulsive category with a strong presence in kiosks, stores and supermarkets and when shopping on the go. The same happened with snacks, which showed a year-on-year growth of 14.2 percent.
Looking at where consumption fell, Di Pace said that the drop in consumption was not uniform across different social classes.
"When divided by socioeconomic level, the lower classes show a 34 percent drop in their consumption year-on-year, the middle class 26 percent and the upper class 11 percent, also taking into account the stocking effect of all social classes in March 2020 in the comparison with March 2021," concluded Di Pace.
— TIMES / PERFIL